Kelly’s Place Learning Center – Presque Isle

Business owners near sign leading into daycare in Presque Isle, MaineShyla Pinette recognized a need in her community after having her daughter. Childcare in Aroostook County was incredibly hard to come by. So, after years in the medical field, she decided to purchase a struggling childcare business and make it a safe and welcoming place for local families.

For assistance making this happen, Shyla turned to Dan Umphrey, certified business advisor at the Maine SBDC at Northern Maine Development Commission. Shyla needed funding to purchase the business and the real estate. She also needed guidance on starting and running her own childcare business.

Classroom with young children on blue sleeping matsAccessing the funding required patience, perseverance, and teamwork. Over several months, Dan and Shyla worked together to find interested lenders, create a business plan, and build out financial projections that made the numbers work. After several discouraging setbacks, Shyla and Dan were able to create a loan proposal with financing from NMDC with funds from the SSBCI program, and seller financing. This proposal included negotiated compromises including the seller’s willingness to slightly lower the selling price, as well as the real estate agent’s willingness to lower their commission on the sale.

Colorful daycare hallwaySeveral last-minute curveballs threatened to jeopardize the deal, but Dan and Shyla were able to find solutions. In the end, teamwork and commitment to enhancing access to childcare in Aroostook County led to the successful purchase of the business. With the funding secured, Dan guided Shyla through the licensing process and the creation of her new LLC, Kelly’s Place Learning Center in Presque Isle.

Shyla comments, “They [the SBDC at NMDC] have been with me every step of the way. If they do not know the answers, they will figure it out for me!”

Located at 180 Houlton Road in Presque Isle, Kelly’s Place Learning Center provides a safe, nurturing environment for growing children. Shyla comments that the business has given her the opportunity to be with her daughter and to watch the community come together for the kids. She loves creating a safe place for the children, and a good place to work for her employees.

To learn more about this growing business, visit their Facebook page!