Successful Abilene business owners created through SBDC

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ABILENE, Texas (KRBC) – The U.S. Small Business Administration is celebrating Small Business Day, in the Key City.

The agency helps entrepreneurs create a business plan in order to allow their ideas to takeoff.

Small businesses like, “Nothing Bundt Cakes“, in Abilene, have benefited from SBA. The pastry business turns two years old, in June.

Co-owner Chuck Lawson explained, that in these two years, his pastries sales have skyrocketted and have landed him in the top 10-percent, out of 300 other stores.

“They put a program together, along with us, on my finances and setting goals and it grew from there and all you got to do is go to work and work hard at it. It’ll come to you,” Lawson said.

The U.S. SBA covers 19 counties in the surrounding area. Workshops take place throughout the year and business counselors are there everyday to help those interested in jumpstarting their own business.

Another Ailene business owner who has benefitted from SBA has taked on the dry cleaning industry.

“We do drycleaning and laundry for our retail customers. We also do some wholesale work. We do alterations, we do wash and folds, we do leather cleaning,” Stone said. “Comforters, drapes. We have a 24-hour dropoff.”

Stone owns A-Town Cleaners in Abilene, which is in its 11th year of business.

“I feel like we give back to the community. Our employees are really the back-bone of our company, as with any business, especially small businesses. They do multiple tasks. We cross-train,” she said.

She did not know a thing about the dry cleaning business, but she persevered and continued in the industry.

“With the help of my family, the community. The Lord had just guided me in so many different ways that I would have never dreamed and blessed us,” Stone humbly said.

Though she makes it looks easy, the 11-year business veteran explained it has not been a challenge.

Stone joked “It’s been one step at a time. We’ve had things go out, like the heart of your company is the ‘boiler’ in the drycleaning business. You get up at five in the morning and that’s not working? So, you have to redirect your whole day!”

The independent female business owner now owns a total of three A-Town Cleaner locations in Abilene; one on S. Treadaway, N. Judge Ely and her newest on Buffalo Gap, which is only a year old!

“You have to start out with a plan. Be sure that you have enough capitol to start with a plan. Small Business Development Center is a great place to start,” Stone explained.

The center is free to the community.

“No degrees are required. That’s why we have lots of business owners that have great ideas. maybe you’re a great chef, maybe you’re a great manufacturer,” Jock said.

Business opportunity specialist, Matthew Jock, said the U.S. Small Business Administration is here for people who just need a place to start..

“They help small businesses develop, expand, entreprenuers can come in here, have a business plan, get it created, look for funding to start their business or expand their business or grow their business,” Jock said.

Stone won the “Small Business Owner of the Year” award for 2018.

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