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Ten Reasons To Love Washington Small Business

Release Date: 
Tuesday, February 12, 2013
Release Number: 
Advisory Date: 
Tuesday, February 12, 2013
Advisory Number: 
Lorin Smith (206) 553-7060
SEATTLE – Small businesses are the heart of Washington’s economy, and the U.S. Small Business Administration is sending them this Valentine with ten reasons to love them.


Ten Reasons To Love Washington Small Business


10. Small businesses make up 98.1 percent of all Washington employers.

 9. Small businesses create more than 53 percent of the American nonfarm private gross domestic product (GDP).

 8. Small patenting firms produce 13 to 14 times more patents per employee than large patenting firms.

 7. The 532,162 small businesses in Washington are located in every community and neighborhood.

 6. Small businesses employ 54.7 percent of Washington’s non-farm private sector workers.

 5. Home-based businesses account for 53 percent of all small businesses.

 4. Small businesses are 97 percent of America’s exporters and produce 26 percent of all export value.

 3. Washington saw an estimated 31,955 new small firms with employees start-up in the last year measured.

 2. There are approximately 50,600 minority-owned businesses and 137,475 women-owned businesses in Washington, and almost all of them are small businesses.

 1. The latest figures show that small business creates 65 percent or more of America’s net new jobs.


My Sweet Lil Cakes opens Feb.14 and is a great example of a small business that will help create a delicious Valentine’s Day for many Seattle-based customers. Started by Sheena Lee Fuson and Jesse Lee Marshall, My Sweet Lil Cakes prepares delicious hot cakes-on-a-stick. A bright tangerine orange 1950’s themed mobile food trailer serves as the storefront, and the various hot cake choices offer customers a healthier, unique alternative to fast food breakfast and lunch. With the capability to move anywhere in the city, the flagship location will be located at 1208 Pine Street (Pine & Melrose) “We are about to be our own tiny part of the Seattle skyline, so that makes us happy,” Fuson said.


Fuson merged her background of cooking and culture with Marshall’s intimate knowledge of Seattle to create My Sweet Lil Cakes. They playfully dare their clientele to try dipping a steaming moist hot cake-on-a-stick into their home-style syrups, then washing it down with their fruit juices, milk, soda pop, or Fuson’s Hush-Hush Chai Tea, a spicy, highly caffeinated, scratch-made blend of ginger, cloves, cinnamon and more, served with fresh steamed milk. “We both share an affinity for this city, love people and service, and especially all this new tasty food the mobile industry is encouraging,” she said.


Like most small businesses, the owners have had to overcome a major setback to keep their dream on track. The trailer company that was manufacturing their custom Sweet Cakes’ trailer delayed delivery twice. Marshall and Fuson hired a transporter to bring the trailer from Georgia who, along the way, called to say she had crashed her vehicle and totaled the brand new trailer. “That was the real gut check, and we almost threw in the towel,” Fuson said. “But we got back up, looked at our plans, and started out all over again from scratch. If you are a hard-working, responsible person with a bright idea, there are systems of support and possibilities, and the idea will come to life.”


Now eight months later, My Sweet Lil Cakes is up and running, ready to deliver the best hot cakes-on-a-stick to the Seattle community. “After receiving assistance from Greater Seattle SCORE and the U.S. Small Business Administration Seattle District Office, My Sweet Lil Cakes is an example of a small business that overcame adversity and can now prosper,” said SBA Regional Administrator Calvin Goings. “Our commitment at SBA is to work arm-in-arm with entrepreneurs to grow and create jobs.”


SBA Seattle District Director Nancy Porzio said, “Through free business advising and start-up classes, My Sweet Lil Cakes can develop into a thriving mobile food restaurant that serves a niche market in Seattle.”


For Valentine’s Day, My Sweet Lil Cakes will be located at 1208 Pine Street, from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. The special Sweet Cake of the day will be Red Velvet Buttermilk with Dark Cherries and house made sweet cream cheese. For more information about My Sweet Lil Cakes, visit their website at www.mysweetlilcakes.com or call (206) 265-3002.


For more information about SBA programs and resources, visit the Seattle District Office webpage at www.sba.gov/wa.

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