Morgantown's Dot Com, LLC was founded as a sole proprietorship named G & R Enterprises on June 10th 1999 in Monongalia County, West Virginia by Rob Gatian. The operation was financed from personal assets and initiated as a home-based business by introducing an advertising system known as “The WAJR Community Boards” in conjunction with local radio station WAJR am. Basic 4’ x 8’ bulletin boards installed at Grocery Stores for postings at store entrances. Included were 12 individual 8 ½” x 11” full color display ad spaces for lease at $1/day with a 1 year ad. The terms of the arrangement were that WAJR was given identity and name rights in exchange for 5 daily radio spots as a form of barter for Morgantown’s Dot Com to begin branding itself via radio.
During the next 2 years, MDC began manufacturing and retailing diversified signage and website products with less emphasis on the community boards as the leases were expiring. On March 28th 2001, G & R Enterprises officially changed its name to Morgantown’s Dot Com, Inc. The company would later change its official status from an S-Corporation to a Limited Liability Company (LLC).
For the remainder of 2001, MDC’s sign manufacturing and website development pace increased dramatically. As demand for quality signs and websites continued, companies such as C&S Construction (Windwood Village), Howard Hanna Premier Properties by Barbara Alexander, and Morgantown Apartments (Bon Vista, The Villas, Barrington North) to name a few, called on MDC to satisfy those needs. Throughout the duration of our first 24 months of operation, MDC became well accepted by the business community of Morgantown.
In 2002 the World Wide Web changes Morgantown’s Dot Com. As the sign business maintained pace, the company was preparing to move to the next level of website development. Go WebSite Live, the companies proprietary website content management system went into development. One by one, content management websites went online and customers were given the ability to manage their websites on their own for $21.95/month. The customer base not interested in website maintenance chose traditional websites that were created, hosted and maintained by Morgantown’s Dot Com. Hosting was provided by a secondary provider which would also soon change.
In the summer of 2002, Morgantown’s Dot Com went online with its first independent server. No longer relying on another provider, Morgantown’s Dot Com was up and running maintaining its very own server. The level of performance of the system and shorter maintenance times allowed for a faster, more reliable service. Enter the age of web hosting. At $21.95/month, Morgantown’s Dot Com is set to host a large number of websites.
Since those early days, Morgantown’s Dot Com permanently became Morgantown's Dot Com & Sign Co. In January 2006 the decision to turn the home-based business out to a commercial space was made. Morgantown Self Storage on Canyon Road, a sign, web and real estate client, took our advice to build and complete 1,000 square foot retail spaces affordable for a small business just striking out. With the help of our good friend Darlene Dunn at BB&T, MDC able to complete the build out of our new space and acquire much needed equipment.
The move would prove to be the right decision as Morgantown Self Storage immediately called on MDC to help in the implementation of its own name change. The name would be 24-7 Self Storage and MDC was charged to create the identity, signage and web presence. The company now has a very recognizable identity all thanks to MDC.
As the last couple of years have unfolded, Morgantown's Dot Com & Sign Co. has become an integral part of the Morgantown business community and has built a reputation for quality. The list of clients and our portfolio speak volumes of what a small business can achieve. Due to our quality products and service delivered in a timely fashion, many of our repeat customers have advertised for us through the proverbial “word of mouth.” Through implementation of this next phase of our history, MDC intends to initiate a broad-scale marketing campaign to increase consumer awareness for ourselves and our clients and reinforce our very positive position in the community.
From day one of operations through the present, MDC has been graciously accepted by North-central West Virginia as a reliable Advertising and Marketing Communications company. Growth has overwhelmingly exceeded expectations, and it is at this time that we begin taking the appropriate measures to accommodate that growth in the needs and demands of our broadening and deepening clientele.
Update. April 2009, Morgantown's Dot Com & Sign Company completes and takes occupancy of its beautiful brand new 3,000 square foot facility on the Mileground in Morgantown. Rob Gatian began construction in November 2008 while continuing to service my clients. With this new facility comes bigger, better, imaginative ideas to better serve our customers in expanding their reach to their customers and clients. As you journey through this website, a labor of love in itself, you will see what a small idea has become. Morgantown's Dot Com & Sign Co. - an idea one late night watching 'The Andy Griffith Show.'