San Antonio Laser is a premier laser engraving and customization company based in San Antonio, Texas. Founded in 2013, the company has a long history of providing high-quality laser engraving services to a wide range of industries, including home users, education, and the military.
One of the things that sets San Antonio Laser apart from its competitors is its commitment to innovation. In 2015, the company began designing and building its own fiber lasers, after continually finding flaws in the machines available on the market. As CEO Steven Ratliff explains, “The current market is crowded with lower quality competitors and overpriced legacy brands. We are gaining traction by providing a high-quality product at a reasonable price point for home users, education, industry, and military applications.” This commitment to offering a top-quality product at a competitive price has helped San Antonio Laser stand out in a crowded market.
Interview with Steven Ratliff, CEO of San Antonio Laser.
Easy Engineering: A brief description of the company and its activities.
Steven Ratliff: SA Laser is a small US based veteran owned company. SA Laser was started as a laser engraving service in 2013. We were the pioneers in using laser technology to customize firearms. We quickly expanded into other applications. After continually finding shortcomings in machines then sold on the market, in 2015, we began designing and building our own fiber lasers. Shortly after, we began teaching our techniques to clients and our popularity and following grew. In 2016 we began development of our co2 laser line (the Razor series) due to similar market deficiencies. Currently we sell our fiber and co laser systems & proprietary training as well as support and repair services. We continue to expand our product lines, curriculum, and channels of growth. The current market is crowded with lower quality competitors and overpriced legacy brands. We are gaining traction by providing a high-quality product at a reasonable price point for home users, education, industry, and military applications. Our gold standard US based support is a difference maker for our consumers, and we build lasting relationships with our clients.
E.E: What are the main areas of activity of the company?
S.R: SA Laser is a premium US based provider of fiber and co2 laser systems used in the customization and compliance markets. Their products are used throughout industry as well as in military, educational and private sectors. They provide proprietary hands-on training for the laser industry and award-winning support from their San Antonio based headquarters.
E.E: What’s the news about new products?
S.R: SA Laser’s fiber and co2 laser systems are top tier in the industry already. But the continual drive of innovation in the company means that they constantly get challenged and pushed to new heights in capability and value. The new products to launch in 2023 will be distruptors for many legacy brands who have lacked innovation and vision over the years. SA Laser is positioning itself with reputation and quality to become a breakout player in the laser space over the next 12 months.
4. What are the ranges of products?
S.R: SA Laser’s custom systems can etch, engrave or cut nearly any material. They have both gantry and galvo machines and have a range of wattage options and source types available to meet any need. The fiber laser systems (named Polymetal Edge) and the co2 series (named The Razor) are award winning and best in class machines.
E.E: At what stage is the market where you are currently active?
S.R: SA Laser is still a young company but rapidly exploring a variety of operating channels. With low overhead and marketing budgets, SA Laser is able to extend outstanding value to their clients by reducing costs and focusing on top tier products and reputation.
E.E: What can you tell us about market trends?
S.R: It varies a bit by market but what we can see is that Industry has remained consistent over the last 24 months and we expect to see an uptick over the next 36 months. The private sector had a boom in 2021 as more people looked for home businesses that could weather lockdowns but has since slowed a little, presumably due to concerns around inflation and the economy. We feel like the next 12 -18 months will have a similar trend, but 18-36 months should see a steady uptick in demand.
E.E: What are the most innovative products marketed?
S.R: We are working on integrating some automation which is pretty exciting. We are also in the process of designing an unique and industry disrupting design change that we plan to launch in Q4 2023. Many exciting things on the horizon.
E.E: What estimations do you have for the rest of 2022?
S.R: 2022 will close out strong and we will see a steady increase each month for 2023. This year has been an investment year for us as we positioned ourselves for the exponential growth we’re pulling levers to achieve. Building an outstanding reputation and having advocates as clients has really helped us achieve more penetration and brand awareness.
In addition to its laser systems, San Antonio Laser also offers proprietary training and repair services. These services are designed to help customers get the most out of their laser systems and keep them running smoothly. The company’s US-based support team is renowned for its gold-standard service, and San Antonio Laser works hard to build lasting relationships with its clients. As Steven notes, “Our gold standard US-based support is a difference maker for our consumers, and we build lasting relationships with our clients.”
Steven Ratliff became the CEO of San Antonio Laser in January 2022, and has been working hard to enhance the company’s product line and continue to offer the best possible service to customers. Reflecting on his leadership style, Steven says, “I’ve had the good fortune to have several great and terrible leaders throughout my career. It’s given me a balanced perspective on what works, doesn’t work, and what’s optimal. I admire people who have creativity and the determination to bring their ideas into reality.” He follows the words of Henry Ford closely, stating, “The man who will use his skill and constructive imagination to see how much he can give for a dollar, instead of how little he can give for a dollar, is bound to succeed.” This business concept has been San Antonio Laser’s motto since its founding.
One of the things that sets San Antonio Laser apart from other companies in the industry is its dedication to helping customers navigate the often-misleading world of lasers. The company works hard to set a high bar in terms of integrity and partnership, and dedicates a significant portion of its marketing efforts to unraveling the confusion webs that other companies may create. Steven and his team provide honest, insightful guidance and transparency in terms of the features and capabilities of their laser systems. As Steven notes, “There is a lot of misinformation in the laser industry, and consumers are generally left to sort through it all on their own. But here at San Antonio Laser, we work diligently to set a high bar in terms of integrity and partnership and dedicate a substantial amount of our marketing to unraveling the confusion webs that other companies construct.”
Overall, San Antonio Laser is a company that is committed to excellence in all areas of its business. From its high-quality products and services, to its gold-standard support and its dedication to helping customers make informed decisions, the company stands out as a leader in the laser industry.
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