From Reptile Food to Ooh La La

Group pic at Capitol

By Alan Christensen, Ephraim SBDC Director

Last Friday morning on Utah’s Senate floor, Senator Ralph Okerlund paid special tribute to several small businesses that have utilized the services of their local Small Business Development Center (SBDC) office and are making a positive impact on Utah’s economy. 

That afternoon a special small business awards ceremony was held in the capitol’s Gold Room.  Nine small businesses from throughout the state were recognized for their success in starting or growing a small business. Those recognized were:

  • Bella Vida Laser and Aesthetics of American Fork (clients of the Orem SBDC – Utah Valley University)
  • Breeders N Feeders LLC (client of the Tooele SBDC – Utah State University)
  • Caregiver Support Network (client of the Kaysville SBDC – Davis Applied Technology College)
  • Grandpa’s Kitchen (client of the Ogden SBDC – Weber State University)
  • Healthy Express Weight Loss and Management (client of the St. George SBDC – Dixie State University)
  • Ooh La La and Friends (client of the Vernal SBDC – Utah State University)
  • South Mountain Builders, Inc. (client of the Salt Lake SBDC – Salt Lake Community College)
  • Stan’s Burger Shak (client of the Richfield SBDC – Snow College)
  • Unshoes Minimal Footwear (client of the Cedar City SBDC – Southern Utah University)

Two common themes run through nearly all of their stories:  First, hard work.  Second, the value of pivotal guidance gained from professional business counselors of the Utah SBDC.

Historically, small businesses have generated 65% of net new jobs in the U.S. and represent 99 percent of all employers.  At the awards ceremony, Sherm Wilkinson, the Utah SBDC state director, pointed out that these nine businesses are representative of many other small businesses the SBDC assists throughout Utah every day.  About half of the clients served by the Utah SBDC are individuals with an idea for starting a business, while the other half are existing businesses seeking improvement or growth.  In 2013, the Utah SBDC network counseled 2,345 small business clients who started 154 companies.  By starting a new business or growing an existing business, clients of the SBDC created 631 jobs in Utah last year.

Let us know, what can the SBDC do to help you?