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Couple Brings New Life to Racine Business With SBA, WBC, and Local Assistance

Couple Brings New Life to Racine Business With SBA, WBC, and Local Assistance

When Christine and Dick Burt were seeking a new business, they saw an opportunity to save jobs and grow a company in Racine. In 2010, they started a manufacturing company specializing in vinyl heat sealing and named their business Altus Vinyl. Altus is Latin for 'noble', which expressed their aspirations for the company. Altus received an SBA 7(a) loan and a microloan from SBA resource partner WWBIC to fund a business expansion.  They also worked with the Racine County Economic Development Corporation.

Altus Vinyl LLC offers capabilities in heat sealing products and can provide added customized features such as foil stamping, debossing, screen printing, and magnetics. Customer service is a hallmark of their work.

By 2012, the business had grown from 5 to 12 employees, many of whom had previously worked in the industry and had been laid off prior to Altus opening its doors. Sales had grown by 62%. Thanks to its recent expansion, Altus is positioned for future growth. As Christine says, 'Having a business is a constant stream--it is ever-moving. Having a 'community team' which includes your family, your employees, your state, local and federal governments; your lending partners, your vendors, your customers, and your own faith--these are your rocks!

They contribute to the growth and expansion. Teamwork is helping to make each community member successful through providing more employment and nourishing the economy. The SBA website is a terrific resource.' Regional Administrator Marianne Markowitz recognized Christine Burt and her accomplishments as a woman business owner in the Racine Community in March 2013 in recognition of Women's History Month.

Christine Burt describes production at Altus Vinyl to SBA Regional Administrator Marianne Markowitz, Wisconsin District Director Eric Ness, Racine Mayor John Dickert, WWBIC’s Heather Lux, and other local economic development stakeholders.

Photo caption: Christine Burt describes production at Altus Vinyl to SBA Regional Administrator Marianne Markowitz, Wisconsin District Director Eric Ness, Racine Mayor John Dickert, WWBIC’s Heather Lux, and other local economic development stakeholders