Two Rhode Island small businesses are among the SBA 100 companies. The SBA 100 features one hundred businesses that have created at least 100 jobs since receiving SBA assistance.
In 1972, Gregg's opened its first restaurant in Warwick with 45 employees. A comfortable 130-seat, family-style restaurant with affordable prices, the menu was limited to mainly deli-style sandwiches, home style soups, chowder, a variety of salads, a bakery and a beer and wine menu. In January 2009, long time vice president of operations, Bob Bacon, and his wife Bobbie purchased the restaurant group. Once again, the SBA 504 loan program was an integral part of the transaction. With the continuity of management the transition was seamless for Gregg’s staff, which has grown to over 450.
Versatile Marketing Solutions, doing business as VMS Alarms, began operations in 2003 from CEO Jay Gotra’s apartment with a phone line and a business plan. Gotra, Brian Fabiano, VP; and Barry Crins, VP Sales, previously worked for a large home alarm company, learning every facet of the business. When that company split up, Versatile Marketing Solutions was formed. The company has doubled the senior sales staff, adding two more states of installation coverage and more than 120 full time administrative, installation, and sales positions between August 2009 and August 2010. The Warwick-based company is forecasting $19 million in revenue for 2011.
“I am pleased that two outstanding Rhode Island firms have been recognized nationally by SBA for their significant job creation,” said Mark S. Hayward, director of the SBA Rhode Island District Office. “Gregg’s Restaurants and Pubs is a Rhode Island tradition in the hospitality industry while Versatile Marketing Solutions is making its mark nationally in the home security alarm industry.”
Descriptions and a photograph gallery of each of the SBA 100 companies can be found at www.sba.gov/100.
The SBA 100 companies include businesses in a variety of industries, from manufacturing, to food and beverage, to shipping. Each business received SBA support in the form of capital, contracting, counseling or investment before going on to create at least 100 jobs.
The SBA provides small businesses with the tools and resources they need to grow and create jobs. The SBA 100 is a cross-section of the diverse array of businesses that stand to benefit from SBA assistance. With the help of SBA, the SBA 100 companies have succeeded and created thousands of jobs across America.