Success Stories

Client Success Stories

Infinite Wellness & Aesthetics – Yarmouth

Brandi Barden and her husband have both worked in the medical field for many years, which is how they came across a very specific niche in the market; Medispa, also known as aesthetics. They found that this could be a unique opportunity to shift to a different area within the medical field. They envisioned this business would be named Infinite Wellness & Aesthetics, offering various aesthetic services: Non-Surgical Body Contouring, Cellulite Reduction, Skin Resurfacing, Skin Tightening, Microneedling, Laser Hair Removal, and Botox to the Greater Portland Area. Brandi and her husband however needed assistance in the business planning process, so they reached out to the Maine Small Business Development Centers for help. Read More

Wild Cow Creamery – Belfast & Bangor

Wild Cow Creamery makes all-natural ice cream from scratch. Each small batch is made with simple, high-quality ingredients and add-ins are mixed in by hand. Their shop in Belfast and stand on the Bangor waterfront are local summer staples. The pandemic hit just as business owners Sarah Wilder and Ryan Cowan were getting ready for the upcoming season.Read More

Kiss Creations – Raymond

It’s always a fascinating occurrence when someone experiments with a new hobby and finds that not only do they enjoy it but they have the capability to turn it into a profitable business! Crystal Tidwell did just that, amidst the pandemic she started playing around with laser cutting; creating topo maps and other designs made out of wood using the laser cutting device. Crystal found herself genuinely enjoying the work in addition to receiving positive feedback and decided to turn this hobby/side hustle into a small business, naming her business Kiss Creations. To officially start her new business, she had to find ways to access some additional capital for start-up costs such as acquiring a larger laser device. She began the process of applying for the CEI Wicked Fast Loan, and that’s how Crystal found herself being directed to the Maine Small Business Development Centers. Read More

Northern Lights Hearth & Sports – Farmington

Josh and Alicia in front of their Northern Lights StoreJosh & Alicia had worked for the previous owner of Northern Lights Hearth & Sports for more than a decade before they were approached about the possibility of stepping into an ownership position. Josh & Alicia were familiar with the business and were strongly positioned to take over the responsibilities of ownership but had never thought about the logistics of an acquisition. To understand the different stages of the transfer and develop a reasonable debt structure for their “new” business, they turned to the Maine SBDC at Androscoggin Valley Council of Governments. Working alongside Business Advisor Raynor Large, they tweaked their business plan, developed a set of financial projections, understood and negotiated their purchase structure, and closed on the deal. Read More

Maine Fly Company – North Yarmouth

A Maine Fly Company fly-fishing reel laying on mossJeff Davis had one goal in mind to celebrate his late father: to share his passion for Maine’s fly fishing culture. Jeff wanted to provide high-quality, affordable small batch rods that are carefully crafted to reflect the beauty of Maine’s waterways. Since opening in 2019, Jeff and his team have experienced promising growth and have plans to continue to expand the business. Jeff found the Maine Small Business Development Centers while seeking advice on the best approaches to expansion. Read More

Sarah Brandon Art – Steuben

Sarah Brandon hand lettering the name Smoke on the back of a boatSarah Brandon moved to Maine over 30 years ago, inspired by Maine’s beauty and strong art community. She knew this was the perfect location to fulfill her artist aspirations. Sarah specializes in the traditional hand lettering for custom boats and small signs. She also creates watercolor paintings, unique durable floor cloths, cards, and many other art offerings all inspired by Maine’s nature. Read More

Shore Path Cottage – Bar Harbor

Shore Path Cottage porch view with tables and water in the distanceShore Path Cottage is located on the coastline in Bar Harbor overlooking Frenchman’s bay and less than two miles from Acadia National Park. They offer one the most comfortable and scenic B&B’s in the State of Maine. Roberta Chester has maintained the history of the 1880 building while incorporating innovations and modernization for her guests. Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, the Shore Path Cottage suffered immensely, having to close its doors due to safety concerns and guidelines. Roberta had to identify ways to sustain the losses from 2020, and that’s when she contacted the Maine Small Business Development Center. Read More

Expose Design LLC – Portland

Victor Rio, founder of Expose Design LLC loading a car with marketing materialsSince 2008, Victor Rios and his business Expose Design LLC has provided small businesses with customized marketing solutions that help them grow. Expose Design offers all things marketing including graphic design, logo creation, print work, embroidery, screen-printing, and promotional content creation. Like most small businesses, Expose Design took a financial hit during the pandemic. This in combination with some previous high-interest debt had Victor concerned about his future. He was referred to the Maine Small Business Development Centers for assistance understanding funding options to help in the recovery process.Read More

Better Living Center – Farmington

Better Living Center Logo - Purple tree with large canopy and roots overlaid with initials BLC and words Eat Well Live BetterWayne Drake had a unique opportunity, to purchase and take over the business where he began his professional career. When Wayne was a teenager, he worked at Better Living Center, an organic, whole food store located in Farmington Maine. He not only assisted with customer service duties but helped with bookkeeping, payroll, and ordering supplies. This experience sparked Wayne’s interest in pursuing a banking and law enforcement career. Years passed but Wayne never forgot the values he gained at Better Living Center. When the previous owners were ready to sell, Wayne jumped at the opportunity.

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Live Life Family Practice – South Paris

After years of practicing in a large medical facility, Cortney struggled with the all-encompassing role the insurance industry played in providing care. To remove this from the equation and provide more direct care in addressing her patients’ needs, she launched her own private practice based on a Direct Primary Care Model, in which a subscription-based payment model provides all of the basic care needs for an individual or family.

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