After over four years of helping storage locker hunters find lost valuables to turn a profit on A&E’s “Storage Wars,” auctioneers Dan and Laura Dotson have finally uncovered some treasure of their own. The reality TV stars recently discovered there is valuable oil under their property in Salyersville, Kentucky. The couple spoke to International Business Times about their big discovery and their plans for their newfound income.
When the Dotsons purchased their 60-acre investment property in 2005, they had no idea they were buying into an opportunity to make a fortune. The Dotsons recently teamed up with X-Terra Resources Inc., a Canadian drilling company and allowed them to begin drilling underneath their property for a percentage of the profits. The results have both thrilled and shocked the "Storage Wars" stars. On Friday, the couple shared a video of themselves on Facebook excitedly opening up their first check for $12,000, the first of many from their newfound joint business venture.
“I opened that check and I absolutely couldn’t contain myself. This is going to be very lucrative,” Laura told IBTimes when speaking about the video. "We ended up with a better number than we started with," Dan added, jokingly calling himself "the master of negotiation."
After having led their lives “fighting for every nickel,” Dan and Laura said they wanted to share their success story with fans in order to pass along their message: Hard work pays off.
“We are the leaders in this modern-day treasure hunting. We bring everybody to the best units. We bring them to the gold and now we’ve got oil, so we’re the perfect example of ... if you just keep your eyes open, you keep your nose to the grindstone, you work hard and you’re a leader. And that’s what we are. We’re leading more people to the American dream.”
“This is a real 'Beverly Hillbillies' story,” Laura said. “If you don’t try and search it out, you will never really find that treasure. You’ll always just say, 'coulda, shoulda, woulda.' ”
So what do Dan and Laura plan to do with their money from their first big oil payday? The couple says they’re going to put a majority of the profits back into their company American Auctioneers, which was established in 1983. Laura hopes a part of the money will go towards launching her Pay the Lady brand, a play on her famous “Storage Wars” catchphrase.
Laura says the goal of her brand is to get women, whether they’re working in the world of business or as a housewife, the recognition and appreciation they deserve. Laura also hopes to launch a line of clothing for the working woman, which would include casual suits and transformable bags. The couple has reached out to A&E about including Laura’s potential line in future episodes of Lifetime's fashion series “Project Runway,” an idea which Laura says network executives are entertaining.
“She would like to show the everyday woman how you can compete in a man’s world, not only with the type of clothes you wear and design that you wear, but the products that you use and your attitude,” Dan explained of his wife's plans.
No matter what's in store for the couple, Dan says he’s confident their future business endeavors will be successful. “Seems like everything we touch turns to gold or oil,” he said. “Whether it’s ‘Storage Wars,’ our company, or this new online thing [the couple recently launched an online bidding section on their site], it’s all going to be successful.”
Catch Dan and Laura on “Storage Wars.” New episodes air Tuesdays at 10 p.m. EDT on A&E.