Learn About Us
The LNI Journey
We are a fourth-generation, family-owned industry leader with the capability to handle everything from multi-location national rollout campaigns to one-of-a-kind architectural masterpieces. We manage all aspects of design, engineering, fabrication, and implementation. In our Southern California workshop, we preserve the art of metalworking while utilizing cutting-edge technology.
Cassius Clay Jr., "Bus", founded Cut Rate Signs in 1952 and changed the name to Local Neon Company, Inc. after marrying Jeanne in 1954. They drove around each evening to find 30 businesses with signs needing repair to pitch to. Local Neon expanded into a full-service provider, serving clients like House of Fabrics, City of Santa Monica, and The Gap.
Local Neon is incorporated as LNI Signs as Bus' son, Scott Blakely, takes over, transitioning the company into a custom sign fabricator. LNI Sign’s clients include Disney, Santa Monica Pier, and Nike.
LNI Signs becomes LNI Custom Manufacturing, Inc. as it grows nationwide. LNI's major clients included Disney, LAX, The Gap, Old Navy, and Davina Dialysis. In 1996, Bus retired, and Local Neon was dissolved, leaving Scott as LNI Custom Manufacturing's sole owner and operator.
LNI's focus shifted from the sign industry to bus shelter manufacturing for municipalities. Scott's expertise in engineering and metalwork allowed LNI to excel in design/build architectural challenges. While still serving large clients like Daewoo Motors and Disney, Scott's primary focus was on winning work in the transportation augmentation industry.
In the next chapter, Clay Blakely, the fifth generation, takes over LNI Custom Manufacturing, Inc. to continue the business’ legacy as Southern California’s premier transit Custom Manufacturer.