Wichita men aim computer support services at individuals, small businesses

Derek Sorrells owned the domain rights to his new company’s name for nearly a decade before a TV show gave him the push to do something with it.

“I happened to be watching ‘Undercover Boss’ one night,” Sorrells said. “They were profiling a guy who owns a company called ‘1-800-Got-Junk.’ It just kind of hit me, the brilliance of having the company’s name and phone number be the same."

Sorrells and a partner, Jeff Reisman, launched 1-855-Geek-Guyz earlier this month. They know it will take more than a catchy name to survive in a tech service industry with no shortage of competitors.

Many of those companies “are trying to be too many things to too many people,” Sorrells said. “We just want to help small businesses and consumers get high-quality service at a reasonable price.”

Services offered by 1-855-Geek-Guyz include virus and spyware removal, data retrieval, wireless networking, hardware upgrades, data retrieval and fixing slow computers. Prices start at $69 for on-site services and $39 for remote services.

Sorrells has owned and sold two businesses in Wichita previously – a cellphone business in the late 1990s and an eBay resale operation called the Auction Yard from 2005 to 2007. He also is owner of Next Computer Solutions, a Macintosh and PC consulting business. He is overseeing the new company’s four part-time technicians. Reisman, whose family owned House of Lighting for many years, is handling the finances.

“We’ve both got quite a bit of retail experience,” said Sorrells, who said he wanted to emphasize customer service as well as provide technical support.

“We want to really take the time to listen to what the customer needs, and when it’s not too technical, show them what you’re doing. It’s not just: Fix the problem and get the money. Maybe they won’t need to call you the next time, but they’ll call when they really need you. It’s about the long-term relationship.”

Because many users of Apple’s iPhones and iPads are now moving from PCs to Apple computers, one specialty of 1-855-Geek-Guyz is offering 30- and 60-minute training sessions that show customers how to use those devices.

Sorrells said the company hopes to raise its profile by participating in community events and plans to donate some computer tune-ups to those who are unemployed and looking for work and families who may be in need during the holidays.

“We’re going to try to give back even as we’re just starting,” he said. “We think that’s important.”

As for the company name that’s also a phone number, if you noticed, it actually has an extra 9 at the end. Sorrells says not to worry.

“That last digit, if you happen to hit it, the call will go through anyway.”