Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Small Business Success Story - Four Sites Camp Wildwood

Each year the New York Small Business Development Center recognizes outstanding small businesses in a variety of ways.  This Success Story from the  Canton SBDC  appears in our 2015 Annual Report



Dennis & Kelly Forsyth
Four Sites Camp Wildwood
Canton SBDC


Dennis and Kelly Forsyth have owned property on Black Lake for many years and love the region. They had the opportunity to purchase Camp Wildwood, a business that had been in business for more than 50 years. The property included a gorgeous house as well as four cottages and four RV sites. Black Lake, often called a “freshwater fisherman’s paradise,” attracts thousands due to its proximity to the St. Lawrence Seaway, the Thousand Islands, the Adirondack Park, and Canada. Dennis and Kelly realized that if Camp Wildwood closed, it would impact tourism in their area. They felt they were uniquely suited to run the facility due to their connections in the region and skills at maintaining the cabins and grounds. They came to the Canton SBDC for assistance in developing a business plan and financial projections to obtain financing to purchase the property. 

With assistance from Advisor Jennifer McCluskey, Dennis and Kelly were successful in purchasing Camp Wildwood, which they renamed Four Sites Camp Wildwood. They obtained a loan from SeaComm Federal Credit Union for $300,000, to which they added personal equity of $125,000. The project resulted in the creation of 2 jobs for the owners. Dennis and Kelly reported that their first summer and fall tourist season resulted in nearly full bookings for Camp Wildwood, many from customers located beyond the borders of New York State. They reported that many of their customers had been coming for several years, and several of them referred new friends to Camp Wildwood. Dennis and Kelly are very thankful for the assistance received from the SBDC. 

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Finding a Not-for-profit's tax filing information

Getting information about not-for-profit organizations may be easier than you realize.

From  GRANTSPACE, a service of Foundation Center

"According to IRS disclosure regulations, exempt organizations must make its three most recently filed annual 990 or 990-PF returns and all related supporting documents available for public inspection. This public disclosure rule also applies to Form 1023, which is filed to obtain exempt status."

Check out the list of websites from which one can get an organization's Form 990 or Form 990-PF.

Monday, March 28, 2016

Boots to Business REBOOT: Rochelle Park, NJ, May 11-12

Veterans: Growing your business?

Boots to Business REBOOT

THE AMERICAN LEGION, VBOC OF NYC & NJ and The SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION PRESENT A FREE TWO DAY PROGRAM FOR VETERANS WHO WANT TO START, EXPAND OR PURCHASE A SMALL BUSINESS.

American Legion Post 170, 33 W. Passaic St., Rochelle Park, NJ 07662
Wednesday, May 11th and Thursday,  May 12th 2016
From  09:00 AM to 4:00 PM – refreshments provided at no cost courtesy of American Legion Post  170

Registration required by April 27, 2016
Registration Link: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1sfVrIL2u3xJgL3luQNd6Mxy0QxBQyQVkIOJD3b0xVSM/viewform?c=0&w=1

For Questions Contact:
Gene Spillane, SBA Veterans Small Business Outreach Officer
Eugene.Spillane@SBA.gov / 972-645-2427

Thursday, March 24, 2016

How to Give Your Local Business an Online Marketing Tune-up

If you operate a “local business” (meaning one that gets most of its customers from your local area), don’t overlook the Internet as an important way to attract new customers and stay top of mind with existing customers or past customers.
According to Google research, having good online information gets more people to shop in brick-and-mortar stores and businesses.
For local businesses, there are some specific steps to take to make sure that your business can be found by searchers in your geographical area.  Because after all, you want local shoppers.  So being found by local searchers is the name of the game for you -- not just Web visibility in general.
HERE a checklist of important steps to take for local SEO:


Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Grants and Loans for New York State Exporters - Global NY Fund

From Empire State Development:
The $35 million Global NY Fund provides loans and grants to help New York State’s small- and medium-sized businesses go global and create new jobs in New York.
 

The Global NY team is coming to all 10 regions of New York State to introduce the $35 million Global NY Fund, which provides loans and grants to help small and medium-sized New York businesses start exporting or increase their global export sales. Grants are also available to non-profits that provide export assistance and trade education to New York State companies. To find out more about any of our events and to RSVP, please email or call: 212-803-2300 

Tour schedule
  1. Mohawk Valley – March 29th (breakfast 8:30-10:30)
    Location: Room IT 225 at Mohawk Valley Community College 1101 Sherman Dr, Utica, NY 13501
     
  2. Capital Region – March 30th (breakfast 8:30-10:30)
    Location: Albany Marriott Hotel 189 Wolf Road Albany, NY 12205

Small Business Success Story - Living Green Insulation Products and Services, Inc.

Each year the New York Small Business Development Center recognizes outstanding small businesses in a variety of ways.  This Success Story from the  Buffalo SBDC  appears in our 2015 Annual Report



Jabril & Ellen Shareef
Living Green Insulation Products and Services, Inc.
Buffalo SBDC


Living Green Insulation Products and Services, Inc. has worked with the Buffalo State SBDC for several years. Co-owners, Jabril and Ellen Shareef have been engaged in construction related enterprises for over 20 years, and completed the Buffalo SBDC’s Minority and Women Bonding Readiness Program. When they approached the Buffalo SBDC more recently, they were forming their first green business enterprise, which converts recycled paper into cellulose insulation.

Jabril and Ellen worked with Advisor Bill Grieshober to develop a complex funding proposal for $960,000 that included funding from First Niagara Bank and the Erie County Industrial Development Agency. They also secured an energy savings grant from NYSERDA for $300,000. Funding was used to purchase equipment and rehab a historic building within the City of Buffalo that houses their manufacturing operations. More recently they secured $165,000 in funding from the Western New York Power Authority to further enhance their plant. 

Today the Shareefs employ more than 20 people. This summer they participated in a pilot training program -Entrepreneurial Effectiveness – the SBDC offers to experienced minority and women entrepreneurs. The program provided Jabril and Ellen with training in creative problem solving, the Seven Habits of Effective People, and social media communications. Jabril and Ellen plan to continue working with the SBDC into the future, commenting 

“Our business advisor was there with us whenever we needed him. Bill became a friend and a trusted confidant that made all the difference for us. Thanks isn’t enough.” 

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Lessons for Leaders: Ignore Your User at Your Peril

Remember Qwikster? In September 2011, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings decided to spin off the DVD section of his business from the streaming service and name it Qwikster. Users revolted--big time.

ceos-in-the-news

Monday, March 21, 2016

Growing Tomorrow’s Business Leaders

The Small Business Administration's (SBA) Emerging Leaders Program helps business owners in challenged communities grow their operations by providing them with the tools they need.

building-leaders-of-tomorrow

Sunday, March 20, 2016

What Makes a Great Leader?

Psychologists have found that successful leaders share the same basic traits. While circumstances also play into the mix, great leaders are those who build these traits over time. 
In this newsletter, we cover other ways to build your leadership skills, as well as a few examples of things not to do, courtesy of some well-known CEOs. 
Image result for young workers (.gov)leadership

Saturday, March 19, 2016

No Man (or Woman) is an Island

Did you know Steve Jobs loved lecturing at universities because it gave him an opportunity to scout talented potential employees and build his team first hand? 
Read more about the habits of successful business leaders.
Image result for young workers (.gov)learn-and-lead

Friday, March 18, 2016

Employers: Young Workers are Your Diamonds in the Rough

Are you an employer who is seeking assistance with your business? Young workers are a potential commodity that you may wish to consider, the following linked article will explain the reasons why.

CLICK HERE

Image result for young workers (.gov)

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Understanding Gross Margin

Ignoring your financial statement is like ignoring the health of your business. Startups and new business owners often overlook understanding gross margin. This can have a direct impact on your ability to effectively manage a growing business, price your products, and most importantly, make a profit.

CONTINUE READING

Image result for business (.gov)

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Small Business Success Story - Fusion East

Each year the New York Small Business Development Center recognizes outstanding small businesses in a variety of ways.  This Success Story from the  Brooklyn SBDC  appears in our 2015 Annual Report



Andrew Walcott
Fusion East
Brooklyn SBDC



Serial entrepreneur Andrew Walcott has been a client of the Brooklyn SBDC for more than five years, working with several of the advisors. He is the son of immigrant parents, who raised him in the inner-city community of East New York. He is a product of local NYC public schools and a graduate of Brooklyn College, where he is currently an adjunct-professor. He is an Air Force Veteran who worked his way through law school and also has earned CPA credentials.

 He has owned and operated his own law and accounting practice for many years. Earlier this year Andrew and his childhood friends opened Fusion East Caribbean & Soul Food, an exciting restaurant in the very neighborhood in which he grew up. East New York is a section of Brooklyn that has suffered from economic hardship, but through the efforts of many key local stakeholders, it seems to be on the rise in terms of commercial opportunity and affordable housing. 

This meteoric business superstar is a product of this historic Brooklyn neighborhood and now is serving his community by giving back in many ways. Providing high quality food mirroring the tastes and preferences of the community is the highest tribute he can give to the community that shaped his rise to success. Fusion East is not just a restaurant. It is a social and community eating establishment that will serve as a cornerstone for families as East New York rises to prominence in its much anticipated renaissance. If outstanding authentic Caribbean/soul food at a fair price is high on anyone's priority list; "Fusion East" is a "must visit"! 

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Where the rubber meets the road: Small businesses and Alzheimer’s research

Calling all small businesses and entrepreneurs!

If we hope to translate what we are learning about Alzheimer’s disease into health, safety, and emotional well-being benefits for Alzheimer’s patients and their families, then small businesses have a vital role in making that happen. The NIA recently published two funding opportunity announcements for small businesses focused on Alzheimer’s disease. One targets the Small Business Innovative Research program and the other theSmall Business Technology Transfer program. Both have an initial submission date approaching rapidly—April 5. And if peer reviewers smile upon your application, you can even receive funding before the end of September this year.

Monday, March 14, 2016

20 Sure-Fire Marketing Tools That Work

Palo Alto Software has some tips they would like to share with you today!

We’re careful about what marketing tools we use and make sure that every one serves a real purpose for a fair price. This is a list of marketing tools that we actually use and recommend. We think you'll like them too.

Click here to read more »



Sunday, March 13, 2016

IRS Health Coverage Forms 1095-A, -B , -C: What You Need to Know

The IRS writes: You, your employees or your clients may receive one or more forms that provide information about 2015 health coverage. These forms are 1095-A, 1095-B and 1095-C. The following health care tax tips provide some answers to common questions about these forms:

For more information on these forms, see our Questions and Answers about health care information forms for individuals.

Saturday, March 12, 2016

The Power of Mentors




We have all experienced different levels of mentoring throughout our lives. It may have been during your childhood, college, a job, or even now. The following SBA article explains the impact mentoring can have; and why your work environment should possibly implement more of these ideas to have a more dynamic and diverse work force.


Mentoring: A Proven Tool For Building A More Dynamic and Diverse Workforce



















Friday, March 11, 2016

Should You Buy A Franchise Right Out of College?

My knee-jerk answer to that question is no. I have several reasons why, and I’ll be sharing them in this article. But first, do you know of anyone who has purchased a franchisebusiness right out of college?


To learn more visit SBA!






Thursday, March 10, 2016

Franchises That Have It All

When looking for a franchise to buy, it’s important to find one that has it all. But, what does it mean to “have it all.”   I'll show you!

Wednesday, March 09, 2016

Small Business Success Story - Alba Business Solutions

Each year the New York Small Business Development Center recognizes outstanding small businesses in a variety of ways.  This Success Story from the  Bronx SBDC  appears in our 2015 Annual Report


Franklin J. Fabre
Alba Business Solutions
Bronx SBDC

Alba Business Solutions, named for Franklin Fabre’s wife Alba, has provided clients with expert tax services for more than 10 years. Franklin J. Fabre was born in the Dominican Republic and immigrated to New York in 1988 at the age of 16. He graduated from Lehman College in 2004 with a degree in Computer Information Systems, and in 2008 completed an MBA in management of technology from the New Jersey Institute of Technology.

After graduating from Lehman, Franklin decided to open his own financial services business. At the beginning, the business focused more on services used mostly by the immigrant community, such as money transfer, international calling cards, and bill payments, but eventually the business prioritized income tax preparation and financial services. Franklin consulted Sam Ballena at the Bronx SBDC for assistance with marketing and financing.

 He obtained a loan through ACCION and contributed $200,000 in equity. The business grew rapidly and Franklin was able to expand his business by opening stores in Queens and New Jersey. Franklin, a proud member of the Latino Association of Tax Preparers, is currently part of the First Cohort of The Bronx Business Bridge, a business incubator program sponsored by Lehman College and SBDC. He is a member of the Cooperative Education Program at Hostos Community College that provides internships to students. Franklin’s philosophy in business and in life is that everyone deserves 5 minutes of respectful attention no matter their education level or professional status. 


Tuesday, March 08, 2016

What you should know about marketing TODAY

No matter what industry you are involved in, marketing plays an essential role in drawing customers to your business.

 In these two links SBA offers the core concepts of marketing- which are fundamental principles that should be known, and also where the direction of the future is taking us, in emotional marketing.


The Core Concepts


The Future of Marketing

Monday, March 07, 2016

10 Benefits of Business Planning for all Businesses

It's a shame that so many people think business plans are just for startups, or to back up loan applications, or for getting investors. The truth is that business planning offers serious benefits for everybody in business.
And I'd like to point out that none of these benefits require a big formal business plan document. A lean business plan (as in What Business Plan Type is Best for Me) is usually enough. It takes an hour or two to do the first plan, then just an hour or two to review and revise monthly.
Here are those top ten benefits.

                                                  10 Benefits of Business Planning

Sunday, March 06, 2016

You Can Taste the Price

A hamburger is from a fancy restaurant. It costs $17. And it probably tastes good. No, it has to -- who would pay $17 for a burger and fries which didn't? No one, at least not twice.

That makes sense: in order to stay in business with an expensive menu, whatever your selling better make for a good dining experience. But at some point, our palates can't really discern between foods. When that happens, other signals take over. And at times, those signals can be so powerful that it overwhelms the rest of the experience. For example, would the same burger and fries taste as good if it cost, say, $4? Maybe not.

More from Now I Know.

Saturday, March 05, 2016

The Hilarious Art of Book Design | Chip Kidd | TED Talks

"Chip Kidd doesn't judge books by their cover, he creates covers that embody the book -- and he does it with a wicked sense of humor. In one of the funniest talks from TED2012, he shows the art and deep thought of his cover designs. (From The Design Studio session at TED2012, guest curated by Chee Pearlman and David Rockwell.)"

The applicability in business, design as marketing, is quite striking.




The link is HERE.

Friday, March 04, 2016

Zen and the Art of Business Leadership

The classic Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance also holds lessons for entrepreneurs. After all, great startups are equal parts science, art and religion.   

Read more about the intersection of business and Zen.


zen-and-the-art-of-motorcycle-maintenance

Thursday, March 03, 2016

Upcoming Matchmaker Events: Watertown, Buffalo, Albany

Watertown: March 29, 2016

North Country PTAC Matchmaker 2016 is an opportunity to meet with procurement and prime contractors and representatives from state and federal government agencies in a series of one-on-one appointments. This annual event provides valuable networking opportunities with dozens of exhibitors and government contracting resources. Both government agencies and prime contractors are looking for qualified firms to buy products and services required to fulfill government procurement needs.

Here is the current list of Prime Contractors and Government Agencies you will have the opportunity to meet one-on-one with.

•    US Defense Contract Management Agency (DCMA)
•    Black Horse Group
•    General Services Administration (GSA)
•    New York State Preferred Source Program (NYSPSP)
•    Fort Drum Mission Installation Contracting Command (MICC)
•    NYS Office of General Services MWBE Office (NYS OGS)
•    Development Authority of the North Country (DANC)

For more information or to register visit: http://business.watertownny.com/events/details/2016-matchmaker-5000