Computer Lodge offers sales, support
WORTHINGTON -- After working on various projects together over the years, John Cowan and Troy Rasmussen decided it was time to go into business together.
The two computer technicians opened Computer Lodge in Worthington a few weeks ago and will launch a second site in Jackson in the weeks to come.
"Both of us have been doing computer work for quite a while, and I'd been getting a lot of interest in Jackson in opening up a place, but I thought it would be nice to partner with someone," explained Rasmussen, who lives in Jackson.
"We'd worked together, knew each other, from working on different projects," added Cowan, explaining that they would tap each other's expertise and collaborate on occasion in their separate enterprises, especially when working on larger business projects.
Computer Lodge will specialize in both sales and service of computers.
"We have 40-plus years of experience between us," noted Cowan.
The name of their business came from the design theme that Rasmussen utilized first in the Jackson location.
"I had bought the building over there," explained Rasmussen, "... and I wanted it to look a certain way."
"The décor came before the name," said Cowan. "So we had to fit the name to the décor, and we came up with Computer Lodge. Luckily, the name was available, and it rolls off the tongue, so it came to life."
The men transformed the space into a north woods lodge themselves. The showroom features pine wainscoting, a soothing green paint color on the walls and inlaid rock on the customer service desk. Behind the scenes, Cowan and Rasmussen both have office space as well as additional work space for servicing computers.
"We do a lot of business support as well as for homeowners," said Cowan, adding that they will make house calls when necessary. "And we do free estimates. We can give them a numbers as far as what they are looking at" to repair a computer, which in some cases can be more costly than buying a new model.
As far as sales, Computer Lodge deals in Dell, Lenovo (formerly IBM) and ASUS computers, but can also special order just about anything a customer may want. It also carries a variety of accessories.
"We're not an official Apple dealer, but we can work on them and even order them if need be," noted Rasmussen.
Helping businesses set up and maintain customized computer systems is what Cowan and Rasmussen enjoy doing most, and they still have their individual areas of expertise. Rasmussen is especially well-versed in computer security -- and Cowan does more of the business-IT work -- but both have the experience and knowledge to troubleshoot whatever problem a customer may throw their way.
Although only open for a few weeks, Computer Lodge's staff is already expanding. A new technician is set to start today, and Cowan and Rasmussen anticipate they will need to add more employees as the business expands and they open the Jackson store.
The Worthington location, 1039 Oxford St., Suite 3 (in the mini mall behind H&R Block) is currently open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.
"As we get more people available, we will expand those hours to accommodate people who want to drop off before or after work or on weekends," Cowan said.
The Jackson Computer Lodge, which will open sometime in July, will be at 606 Second St.
Daily Globe Features Editor
Beth Rickers can be reached at 376-7327.