Blog

Aegir’s Den Meadery – Palermo

Mark and Carrie Mancini both come from families familiar with fermentation and preserving, but a friendly competition leading to the accidental brewing of a honey mead made Aegir’s Den Meadery possible!

After nearly a decade of experimenting and testing different meads with friends and family encouraging them, they opened their Pittsfield storefront in 2019 and gained some good traction prior to the COVID shutdowns. They had a strong brand and partnerships with a local winery for bottling space and were being distributed throughout the Bangor and Portland area.

They connected with the Maine SBDC as they were getting ready to expand last year. They needed to grow in order to keep up with production and that meant they were also going to need capital to hire more employees and purchase additional equipment. Maine SBDC at CEI Business Advisor Peter Piconi was able to work with Mark and Carrie to understand their capital needs and provided resources that helped identify the best avenue to pursue. Together they developed financial forecast worksheets and reviewed the business plan so they could understand how grants or traditional lending would fit into their plan. Read More

Wine House on Main – Kennebunk

Betsy Ross owns the Wine House on Main, a small wine shop and bar located in downtown Kennebunk. Since 2021, Wine House on Main has offered wine selections from small families around the world. With decades of experience in hospitality and the wine industry, Betsy shares the stories of winemakers, vineyards and regions with her customers to deepen their connections to the wines they purchase. Wine House on Main also hosts educational wine classes, paint and sip events, and wine tastings. 

Betsy heard about the Maine SBDC through another business owner. Dedicated to making her business a warm and welcoming space for the community to come together, Betsy reached out for general business guidance and was connected with Anne Lancaster, Maine SBDC business advisor at the University of Southern Maine. Read More

Odyssey Event Designs – Portland

Rachel Johnson pivoted in college from Fine Art to Hospitality, which set her on the path of finding her passion in event planning! She worked her way through boutique hotels and luxury resorts learning as much as she possibly could and eventually started a side hustle while continuing to work her 9-5 job. She even used her lunch break to walk down to city hall and register Odyssey Event Designs! Nearly 5 years later, she was ready to pursue event planning full-time and was able to connect with Maine SBDC Business Advisor Susan Desgrosseilliers to help her take things to the next level! Read More

Multi-Level Marketing: Too Good To Be True?

“Work from home!” 
“Earn $1,000 a week working one hour a day!”
“Make money while you are on vacation!” 

Too Good To Be True?

Shakes, candles, leggings, vitamins, and makeup are just a few examples of direct sales products marketed as “start your own business” ventures.  With promises of top earners winning extravagant vacations and living a fabulous lifestyle, each year thousands of people flock to these businesses thinking they are an easy way to embark on entrepreneurship. Read More

Custom Fit Physical Therapy & Wellness – Auburn

 As a healthcare worker negatively impacted by COVID, Jennifer Frazier decided to launch her own physical therapy practice where she could uphold her values and create personal plans to help her physical therapy clients recover. Out of that grew Custom Fit Physical Therapy & Wellness, an outpatient physical therapy clinic that assists clients develop and meet rehabilitation goals. As Jennifer began the process of building her business, her SCORE mentor recommended Maine SBDC at AVCOG Center Director and Business Advisor Lori Allen as someone who could offer concentrated assistance with her business plan. Read More

To Purchase or Not to Purchase? – Penobscot County, Maine

black and white image of a person in a black suit on a white background with many Yes's and No's streaming out of their head into a cloud of confusion in the skySuccess stories come in all shapes and sizes, but sometimes avoiding a bad situation is the best-case scenario! While Maine SBDC Business Advisors are usually helping their clients towards a traditional happy ending, they are often tasked with helping aspiring entrepreneurs avoid potentially damaging situations. We saw it first-hand this past year when Shawn Bouchard came to the Maine SBDC for help. Read More

Small Business Saturday Prep

Text wraps in a circle saying Shop Small - Small Business Saturday in white bold letters on a dark blue background, light blue store front graphic and the Maine SBDC logo This year Small Business Saturday is November 26, 2022! The day is dedicated to supporting and buying from small local businesses. It’s become a holiday shopping tradition over the past twelve years and continues to grow in both sales and participation. But it takes preparation to make the best of the day! Below you’ll find resources that provide suggestions for getting involved and for supporting small businesses! Read More

Snow Dogs – Camden

 If you’ve ever visited Camden you’ll know there is a little something for everyone, food, shopping and outdoor adventures! It also has the only ocean view from a ski area on the Eastern Seaboard at Camden Snow Bowl! Another thing you’ll only find at Camden Snow Bowl, Snow Dogs! Jason Doppelt’s food stand opened last winter and was a “frying” success and now he’s gearing up for another season! Read More

Black Bear Mobile Maintenance – Harrison

Black Bear Maintenance Logo, includes black lettering with a graphic wrench. One side of the wrench cleats are in the shape of a black bear  Jonathan Daggett of Black Bear Mobile Maintenance is a military veteran with the ability to repair everything from small engines to helicopters! Through his years of working experience at a tractor repair shop, he saw an opportunity to (quite literally) serve customers where they are at. Read More

Preventing Partnership Pitfalls: Part 3

Preventing Partnership Pitfalls: Best Practices

Blue cut out paper people giving each other a high five on a blue to black gradient backgroundSo… you and your best friend, brother, or spouse want to go into business together? Of course, you agree on everything right now, but what happens when you don’t? In many cases being realistic and pragmatic can be the kindest, mostly loving thing you can do for your partner and yourself.

Our very own Maine SBDC Business Advisor Chris Cole has personal experience with a scenario that ended very differently than she thought it would. Check out Part 1 and Part 2 for the full picture! 

Part 3

Vision: Each person comes into a business with different personal goals and ideas on how to run the operation. It is important from the start to have an honest discussion regarding your vision for the business. Why do you want to go into business together? What complementary skills do you each bring to the business? Do you want to have a small operation or scale-up? Does your partner want the same things? Read More