Scott and Megan Rardin, owners of Alton’s Best Cab Company in Alton.
When Scott Rardin picked up a $20,000 lottery ticket late last month, he took his winnings and invested them back into the community.
”This is for the people here,” Rardin, 36, of Alton, said. “My wife and I had wanted to open our own cab company for a long time, but we never had the capital to do it.”
Rardin has cruised the Greater Alton streets as a cab driver for more than a decade. Originally from the Chicago area, he moved here 12 years ago and has been in the cab business ever since.
He opened his business on April 14 and collected the winnings on April 26. After taxes he had $14,000 left over, still pretty big earnings to come from a $20 Fabulous Fortune scratch-off. He used the rest to pay for insurance and three new vehicles at his business, Alton’s Best Cabs, or ABC Cabs.
“That lottery ticket is the reason this business is running like it is today,” he said. “We’ve done nothing but grow since day one.”
Rardin said they currently run three vans and a sedan, each of them averaging 20 to 25 customers per day, with an average of about 125 people daily.
Rardin plans to add a new a vehicle to the fleet next week, giving him five cars. He’s off to a hot start, currently employing 14 drivers, three dispatchers, as well as being the only cab service in the River Bend with minivans.
He plans to do business the 21st century way, too, using Internet promotions through social media and partnering with other businesses to build a reputation.
“We run credit cards and have student rates,” he said. “The people we have working here have been in the business for a long time and we’re trying to meet the needs we’ve seen develop over the years.”
So it’s safe to say Rardin has big plans and high hopes for his business, but he’s got good reason to be positive.
After all, he did just win the lottery.