Groennfell Meadery Owners “Jump the Curve”

January 21, 2020

Vermont Success Story, by Amanda Kuhnert –

Groennfell MeaderyIn December of 2018, after five years in business, Kelly and Ricky Klein of Groennfell Meadery announced they would be closing their popular tasting room and restaurant in Colchester. “There is no question that this was the hardest decision we had to make about growing,” they wrote in a blog post on the company’s website. They had developed a loyal clientele and would miss the regulars who came in for weekly events and conversation.

But closing their Colchester location was a critical step in the company’s growth process. In July, 2019, Groenfell Meadery moved into a new facility in St. Albans. The larger space has enabled the Kleins to triple their brewing capacity. Their mead is now available in cans and on draft throughout New England.

Jumping the Curve

The Kleins first reached out to the Vermont Small Business Development (VtSBDC) in January, 2013, on a referral from VPTAC. They were seeking resources and advising on growing their business in the areas of marketing, pricing, and access to additional capital in the future. Over the years, the Kleins have taken advantage of the business resources and mentoring services available through VtSBDC. (more…)

Profit Margin Formula

January 14, 2020

What is it, How to Calculate it, How to Improve Profit Margin

By Anna Baluch –

When you sell a product or service, it’s important to understand your profit margin or how much money you make by selling your product. Essentially, a profit margin shows your return on investment (ROI) for all of your expenses. A low margin indicates you’re not getting the ideal ROI for your expenses while a high one proves you’re doing well.

Ideally, you’d have a high profit margin that steers your organization toward long term growth and success. By taking the time to figure out your profit margin, you can set attainable goals and make informed decisions for your unique business. (more…)

AC Electric Motor Service

January 7, 2020

AC Electric Motor ServiceSuccess Story, Idaho –

A decision to pursue a new adventure turned in to a family business

In 2014, Beto Arteaga gave up his job at an electric motor shop, where he had worked as a teenager. The idea was to start his own business; so he approached his Father. His Father, Norberto, was not excited about the idea, due to his growing real estate business, but Beto was persistent.

Together they started to research the possibility with help from the SBDC. They found an electric motor repair shop that was for sale, and they bought all the equipment and tools necessary to start the business. They then found a building to rent, and AC Electric Motor Service was established.

Norberto came to the SBDC because his family knew SBDC Regional Director Bryan Matsuoka. Matsuoka helped the Arteagas with their business plan and educated them about financing. After following their consultant’s advice, they purchased the building they were renting, and they accomplished their two-year goal in six months. (more…)

These 5 Myths Cause Small Businesses to Fail

January 1, 2020

By Charles “Tee” Rowe –

Every year, Americans start businesses with the hope of achieving financial success, independence, and personal fulfillment. Unfortunately, many times those dreams are never realized. Too often the enthusiasm and energy that small business owners put into their business isn’t matched by the planning and skills needed to survive.

At America’s SBDCs — 62 small business development center networks nationwide and their nearly 1,000 centers — we find that a solid business plan and a brilliant business concept need to be married to a serious understanding of the financial and management needs of running a business.

Too many businesses believe marketing is their key to success, but hemorrhaging cash is the secret, silent killer. So for aspiring entrepreneurs, here are five myths small business owners believe in that lead to failure:

1. Don’t ask for help

“You’re smart, you’ve got this.” Nobody has got it. There are so many free resources out there, and the biggest mistake many small business owners make is not using those resources. There are nearly 1,000 small business development centers nationwide — why would you ignore free help? (more…)