Film Star: How a Career Change Led to Window Film

April 14th, 2021 by Emmariah Holcomb

It’s a family affair. Brian and his wife Annette work together at Exclusive Detail.

Successful window film shop owners come from a variety of industries, even banking, as was the case for Brian Brown, owner of Exclusive Detail in Charlotte, N.C. He says that change in career paths led him to a more fulfilling career.

Brown currently has three full time employees along with his wife, who also works at Exclusive Detail. His business currently does approximately $600,000 in sales annually and has plans to expand further. Window tint was introduced in 2003 and he started offering paint protection film (PPF) in 2005. You can read all about Brown’s business in the upcoming March/April issue of Window Film magazine, but he had so much good advice to share that we saved some of it for readers of

Get Back Up

Brown admits there were several challenges throughout his time with Exclusive Detail, the biggest issue was capital. “We were undercapitalized to start and just didn’t have money,” he recalls. Brown advises those just getting into the business to factor all of the costs in prior to opening.

“Real estate is expensive and I know a lot of guys who rent out large spaces and find it financially challenging,” says Brown. “When I started out, we were in one unit and grew into another, and believe it or not, during the pandemic we’ve added another, so we’re in three spaces right now.”

Brown says being able to balance expenses for one unit was difficult he found himself working just to reinvest in his business. “Aside from capitalization we’ve found that finding good people to work with can be an uphill battle,” Brown adds.

More Avenues

Brown and his team currently focus on automotive projects and installations, but that’s not all the company can offer. Exclusive Detail has a separate LLC that is registered to do commercial and residential window film installations. The second LLC is dormant now because Brown doesn’t have staff available to complete additional installations. Expanding the second branch of the business isn’t the only thing ahead for Exclusive Detail.

“One of the things happening now is we’re beginning to go into a mentorship role with the business,” Brown says. “We’ve had people come from different states just to learn from us and find out tips to having a successful business by observing how we do things.”

“In the future we want to look at working with small shops and take them under our umbrella, similar to a franchise or a lead generation entrepreneur model,” he adds.

This article is from Focus on Film, the weekly e-newsletter that covers the latest news regarding window film and related products, including paint protection film. Click HERE to sign up—there is no charge. Interested in a deeper dive? Free subscriptions to Window Film magazine in print or digital format are available. Subscribe at no charge HERE.

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