Custom Automotive Lighting from an UMSL Student Entrepreneur

Patrick Davis is in his last year at UMSL and working on his own business called Illlumenessence that focuses on custom automotive lighting. His story perfectly showcases an entrepreneurial journey.

Hi Patrick, could you tell us a little bit about you?

Hi, absolutely! I am graduating in the fall with a major in marketing and a minor in digital media. I will also earn my Certificate in Entrepreneurship. In addition to my academics, I work on my own custom automotive lighting company.

Which entrepreneurship classes did you take? What have you learned from them?

I have taken the Introduction to Entrepreneurship, the Entrepreneurship/Small Business Management, Social Entrepreneurship, and the Accelerate Capstone and I learned a lot from these courses. After the Intro to Entrepreneurship course, I realized that it was possible for me to start a business, not just a far-fetched concept. Then the classes provided me with the formation on how to make those ideas more realistic, how to make a product that benefits the customer not what you think is good and so much more applicable knowledge.

Now I think entrepreneurship is not about luck but how much energy you put in. Nowadays I pay attention to my competition to figure out how to adapt and be different, for instance, lights that increase safety.

Why were you interested in the classes?

I knew what I wanted to work on but I needed structure to my idea. It was so much better to learn from classes than just jumping into it blind.

Do you have any other engagements with the entrepreneurship offerings at UMSL?

I have attended several Entrepreneur Club meetings and I want to enroll in the Entrepreneur in Residence program.

Tell me more about your company.

Illlumenessence designs, builds and installs custom lighting for any car while focusing on style, safety, and security. We create 3D renderings, prototypes, circuits, and other hardware used during installment and a software that controls the light fixtures. Recently, we started to expand into custom sound systems for cars as well.

What are your next steps with the company?

Right now, I have limited capacity to build our online presence but we are further developing the website which will be published soon.

At the same time, I’m exploring how to create and run an online store where customers can buy DIY installation kits.

If you want to see more of Patrick’s work, check out his Instagram!

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