An entrepreneur at heart, Jennifer DeChant had always dreamed of owning and running a small business. When her corporate job was eliminated, she took stock of her options. Was now the time to take the leap? During a pandemic? Was it just too crazy?
Jennifer had the opportunity to purchase a candy boutique located in the heart of downtown Bath. For over 15 years, Bath Sweet Shop has been a spot to get delicious and quality chocolates, candy, and customer service. Jennifer reached out to Maine SBDC at CEI to think through the idea more. Working alongside Business Advisor Brad Swanson, they considered the opportunity from all angles.
She comments, “When the opportunity finally presented itself, I was nervous about how to make it a reality. After my first phone call with Brad, I was put at ease. I knew it was going to take work and preparation but I was confident I was being advised properly and honestly.”
They discussed the structure of the deal and how to approach the seller. They worked through the financials of the deal to determine a fair price and how much in financing she would need to secure. With a solid business plan and accompanying financials, Jennifer approached Coastal Enterprises, Inc. to secure the financing she needed and was approved. In June 2020, Jennifer and her family officially took the reins and became the new owners of Bath Sweet Shop.
Jennifer comments, “None of this would have been possible without the assistance from the Maine Small Business Development Centers…the professionalism, patience, and expertise of Mr. Brad Swanson were essential to my ability to navigate an unfamiliar system for financing as well as business planning.”
Jennifer comments, “I am proud to be a first-time business owner….Opening a store during a pandemic is not an easy feat. It will take hard work. The first step toward success was made possible because of my interaction with Maine SBDC.”
Business Advisor: Brad Swanson
To follow this growing Maine business, visit their website or Facebook.