The financial sector is a complicated intersection between numbers guys and practical experience in a variety of other industries, but Troy Caruso brings both sets of expertise to the table. Based in Long Island, New York, Caruso worked in construction for many years, giving him firsthand knowledge of the hard work and dedication required to get the job done. He has also worked in the financial sector, learning how to transform theoretical ideas into a realistic vision for a business. The result is an extremely successful entrepreneur.
Today, Caruso is the CEO of Radium2 Capital, an alternative lender capable of processing small business funding requests in as little as one day. This ensures that entrepreneurs can access the capital they need to launch or grow their businesses. Traditional banks may offer comparable funding, but Radium2 Capital offers a more transparent application process and a lasting relationship with every client to help steer them toward success.
Radium2 Capital is also committed to helping the local community that supports them. When Caruso was named Cooley’s Anemia Foundation Man of the Year in 2017, he and his team used the opportunity to raise over $500,000 for charity.
We recently had the opportunity to sit down with Caruso and discuss what has made him the successful man he is today:
How did you get started in this business? What inspired you to start this business?
The financial industry has always intrigued me. There are so many stories about what works, what doesn’t, and how that paradigm will change as the industry continues to evolve. I wanted to experience it all firsthand, so Radium2 Capital was formed so that I could be on the front lines helping entrepreneurs achieve their dreams with transparent, innovative financial products.
Not only do I get to experience what worked for my own company, I also get to work in all of the industries Radium2 Capital works with. Every day is different and exciting, and I love every minute of it!
How do you make money?
We charge interest on the financial products we offer, generating revenue. Unlike other lenders, we’re up front about all of our charges, allowing customers to make an informed decision about whether or not we can help them.
How long did it take for you to become profitable?
I’ve been lucky enough to have been successful almost immediately in the financial industry. That doesn’t mean that I’ve never made mistakes, but I’ve always managed to learn from them and master the skills I needed when I needed them most.
When you were starting out, was there ever a time you doubted it would work? If so, how did you handle that?
I’ve always been pretty confident in my abilities, so I never really lost faith that I would be successful. There were rocky times along the way, but I always trusted that I had the experiences and skills necessary to eventually come out on the other side.
How did you get your first customer?
I had connections within the financial industry from before I launched Radium2 Capital, and I managed to leverage those to get my business off to a promising start. Connecting with others in your field is a necessity to success in the business world, so my prior experience in the financial world really helped me.
What unique marketing strategies do you use to generate new business?
I firmly believe that the local community will go out of its way to support a business that gives back, so I try to maintain an active presence in my area. One of my proudest moments was when my team and I managed to convert an award given to me into $500,000 for worthy causes.
I also believe that the leader of a company dictates its overall culture, so I try to encourage my team members to get active in our community as well. I’m proud to say that it’s working well, giving Radium2 Capital a significant footprint that helps drive business to us.
What is the toughest decision you’ve made over the last few months?
That’s a tough one! While we try to work with every prospective client, sometimes it’s simply necessary to decline an application. The financial part of my brain knows it’s the right decision, but I still struggle with denying an entrepreneur their dream.
Why do you think you have been successful?
A lot of entrepreneurs have the mistaken idea that the quality of their idea ultimately dictates their success or failure. The truth is that execution of your idea is far more important than the idea itself. Execution is something I can teach, allowing me to help numerous entrepreneurs over the years.
What has been your most satisfying moment in business?
The best part of any day is when I hear that a company we worked with in the past has achieved what they wanted to. It could be growth, a new location, or simply staying open–all of it is just music to my ears.
Sometimes, I reach out to past clients just to see what they are up to. Nothing is more fulfilling than a Radium2 Capital success story, and I hope to expand the company and produce more positive outcomes in the future!
What books have inspired you?
My favorite book of all-time is The Men, The Mission and Me by Pete Blaber. It’s a military book, but the lessons are relevant for anybody in a position of power. For example, one of Blaber’s key tenets is to always trust the insights offered by the person on the ground. In my line of work, that means listening to every entrepreneur’s unique circumstances to deliver a financial solution that works for them.
What recent purchase have you made to help your business?
We always keep our technology up-to-date to ensure the fastest and most transparent application process possible for our clients. We take great pride in being on the cutting edge of our industry, even if it requires periodic upgrades. (Laughs)
What keeps you motivated through tougher times for your business?
I love to see people smile. Whether we are approving a loan application, helping out in our community, or connecting with a previous client, every smile gives me the strength to carry on regardless of the obstacles I’ve been facing.