Nick Lam is a modern-day matchmaker: He connects his elite clientele with the perfect cars.
The 25-year-old co-founder and CEO of New York Auto Depot makes it his business to help rich Chinese college students navigate the American car market and buy ultra-luxury vehicles.
Most of the Chinese students who come to America and purchase their first cars "don't know what they are talking about: what this button's for or ... that after buying a car, you need to pay tax," Lam said. "I'll also help them get a better price, because they don't know how to negotiate with American people — that's why they come to me."
Lam knows from firsthand experience. Soon after he came to New York from Hong Kong in 2009 to attend Stony Brook University, he purchased a car so he could deliver pizza for Papa John's. But it turned out to be a poor decision.
"In just four months it had brake problems, engine problems, transmission problems," he said. So he turned to books, magazines and YouTube to learn what was ailing his car.