How STONE’s Kris Klar reached his goal of becoming his own boss

    Around 5 a.m. on any given workday, you can find STONE and CLOTH founder and CEO Kris Klar at the gym, working out and listening to various business audiobooks on his headphones. Long before opening STONE in 2009, Klar knew he wanted to start his own business, but finding the right fit took a few years of patient research and learning, Business Report details in the new Entrepreneur feature from the current issue.

    After graduating from LSU with a business degree, Klar began his professional career in marketing for a Fortune 500 company, managing employees across four state territories. But even then his sights were set on working for himself.

    “I was reading everything I could get my hands on, researching business, constantly looking for the industry I wanted to get into,” Klar tells Business Report. He eventually settled on the construction industry and decided to specialize in high-end countertops. STONE was born.

    After five years of establishing his business as a local leader for marble, granite and quartz countertops, Klar expanded his offerings to include flooring and this past fall he further diversified the product line, launching a custom furniture division called CLOTH.

    “I’d set up my business to where I constantly wanted to grow, so when the opportunity presented itself, I was ready to jump on it,” Klar says.

    With extensive, self-taught knowledge of each sector of his business, Klar spends his days acting as both consultant and contractor, meeting with homeowners to discuss countertop installations or running across town to check on commercial projects at hotels or casinos.

    By providing flooring, countertops and custom furniture selections all under one roof, Klar says he’s filling a void in the Baton Rouge home improvement and construction market.

    In a city with no shortage of furniture, flooring or kitchen and bath stores, STONE and CLOTH focuses on offering customization, a comfortable atmosphere and customer ease to separate themselves from the competition.

    Read the full Entrepreneur feature. Send your comments to editors@businessreport.com.

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