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Frank Spencer III: From $1,000 Investment into Multi-million Construction Firm

 In Blog, Success Profiles

Frank Spencer III shares how he bought his dad’s company and what he learned by going through the process!


Frank Spencer III was born and raised in Pecos, Texas. He played in the American Gridiron Football in Australia and graduated from A&M University.

He then began his career in the mortgage lending industry, but changed path when his father offered to sell his company’s business name for $1,000. 

Currently, he is the President of Aztec Contractors, Inc., a general contracting company providing general construction, construction management, engineering and surveying services to both government and commercial clients.

In 2016, Frank was the recipient of the El Paso Minority Small Business Champion Award at the SBA’s Small Business Week awards.

Meanwhile, his company became part of the Inc. 5000 list with their 242% growth this year.


Before the market crashed, Frank and his father had a  conversation about starting his own business and his father offered to sell Aztec Contractors for $1,000.

However, it was not an easy path for Frank. His father charged him for his space in the company and for using his accountant.

He then thought it was brutal but it was the right thing to do to teach him a lesson. 

“It’s something he instilled in us at a very early age that nothing’s given to you, you gotta work for it.”


In managing Aztec, it took them six years to find an investor and a local bank to support them to get started. 

Although he had investors and a bank to support the company, they put tremendous hurdles in terms of liquidity and it’s a battle to work on their backlogs because he wanted to do it on his own. 

Luckily, with the help of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce who helped put their loan package, Aztec Contractors received a small business loan worth $1,000,000  through the SBA 7(a) Guaranteed Loan Program in 2012.


Aztech Contractors received their certification in February 2009, but their biggest struggle is their infrastructure because they don’t have enough past performance.

However, Frank continued on working and going to local and national events to communicate with other contractors and do their capability presentations. That’s when in 2012, they received their first sole source job in Homestead Florida. 

“So you know, just trying to find other people that would help you and really just trial and error, just stumbling on these things or asking questions or knocking on the door and then having to shut in your face.”

Although that project didn’t make any money, this gave them the necessary past performance because six months later, the GSA gave them a job worth of over a hundred thousand dollars.

“That’s the story I like to tell a lot of these 8as that are coming out and, you know, just hungry to get work. And sometimes those opportunities there’s risks but, you know, if they open that door slightly, take it, run with it, bear down. And that’s kind of what kicked me off, you know, a $43,000 job. And now, we’re doing, you know, $20 million job.”


1. Know your “why.”

As a business owner, you need to learn the market but you should also not forget to have a management perspective on everything. Remember, you are a leader and it is your job to fill the gaps in your organization. 

“That vision early on has given me that I know where I need to be and I’m not going to stop till I get there. And that’s where it comes from, I think because there’s a reason, there’s a why behind it.”

2. Look for every detail. 

Be reliable, predictable, and consistent. Focus on what you’re supposed to do and if there’s a little thing that needs tweaking, then work it out because those simple things are important. 

“In our situation, our businesses in general, is if we look at the little things, if we take care of those things, then, you know, when it’s, when the big things happen, you’re there. You got it… I mean, that’s how I look at things. I’m always looking at the little things, paying attention to detail, and pushing our team to try to do better, find ways to improve.”

3. Be accountable.

At the beginning, you should already set everyone’s expectations on what level you are working or what you can do, because in this sense, it’s not really threatening but accountability.

“I think that if you’re putting yourself out there and they’re putting in, you’re also putting them again, it, they know that when you sit down at the table, you know, things are going to come up and it makes people feel uncomfortable. But I think that that’s how they earn their trust and their respect, because you’re, you’re not, you’re not hiding anything.”


If you want to learn more on how Frank Spencer III shares how he bought his dad’s company and what he learned by going through the process, then be sure to click the resources below. You can also visit the GovCon Giant website or the new GovCon Edu where you learn everything about government contracting!

075: Frank Spencer III – Turns $1,000 investment into multi million dollar construction firm

This is How He Turns $1,000 investment into multi million dollar construction firm

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