Our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy have changed.

By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to the new Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.

Pinball Paradise
By Julie Sloane

(FORTUNE Small Business) – Gripped by Nostalgia for the New Jersey boardwalk arcades of his youth, David Young, 44, began collecting pinball machines in 2002. In October of that year, he bought a Twilight Zone game on eBay for $2,000. Young, the owner of a Boca Raton--based computer chip distributor called Boca Micro Technology, was just taking delivery of the machine when a passerby offered him $6,000 for it. Sold! Curious about demand, Young posted photos of the rest of his collection on a slapdash website and sold nearly all of it in a month. The following year his new company, BMI Gaming, brought in $1.4 million and is on course to quadruple revenues in 2004.

In August, Young opened the country's largest arcade game showroom—5,000 square feet, with 175 new and used pinball and arcade games. His bestsellers are Ms. Pac Man ($3,275) and The Simpsons ($4,000). He ships machines all over, using regional contacts to do any repairs. The pinball wizard dreams of being the first nationally branded arcade-game retailer. Is his job as fun as it seems? "No," Young says. "It's about 1,000 times more fun than it seems." —JULIE SLOANE