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Success Stories

Gutter Werks, Inc., a family-owned business, was started in 1998 by Brad Howe and his son Joshua. No stranger to the industry, Brad actually started working in the rain gutter business in 1976. The experience provided him with a sound foundation when starting Gutter Werks, Inc. The company offers installation of a seamless rain system that comes in 40 colors and is formed on site creating a virtually seamless and superior product.

Brad and Joshua started small, getting a contractor’s license, placing an ad in the phone book, and distributing flyers. Today, Gutter Werks, Inc., has grown to include five full-time employees and two part-time employees. Brad and his son enjoy self-employment, but sometimes wish there were more hours in the day to get everything done. They also believe in giving back to the community and do so by installing rain systems on drug rehabilitation centers and battered woman shelters at no charge.

Their goal is to grow Gutter Werks, Inc... Read More

In 1997, Matt Meis, now a 30-year veteran in the jewelry industry, was laid off from his job with a local diamond importer. He decided it was time to start his own business, Matt Meis Goldsmith. For years, while working various jobs in the jewelry business, from craftsman to retail store manager to wholesale salesman, he had been creating and selling jewelry privately to family and friends which led to referrals creating a broader customer base. Eventually he felt he had created a niche market for fine jewelry customers looking for an alternative to the traditional retail store buying experience. He provides a convenient, high quality, competitively priced option for clients looking for specialty fine jewelry.

Matt’s clients have nick named him the “wandering jeweler” since he goes to his clients rather than having them come to him. Matt prides himself on his ability to work closely and patiently with each customer to satisfy their fine jewelry needs, in the comfort of... Read More

Small Business Owner Consults with SBDC, Receives SBA Loans for Expansion

The Dinner Studio was born out of the realization that almost nobody has time to cook on a regular basis anymore. More and more people are turning to convenience meals loaded with fat, salt, sugar, and preservatives or “fast food”.

Dinner Studio co-owners, Katherine Christensen and Gloria Otten, shared similar views on the need for an affordable and convenient way for families in San Diego to eat well every day. Ms. Christensen left a busy law practice to become a Professional Personal Chef and Ms. Otten, having spent most of her professional life in the field of restaurants and catering, began her career as a Professional Personal Chef when she moved to Southern California. As Professional Personal Chefs, they were constantly meeting people who could use a little (or a lot) of help in the kitchen. So they put their heads together and created The Dinner Studio, which marries the best aspects of a personal chef service and fast meal preparation at an affordable price.... Read More

David Linde and Abbie Kaplan started Salon Radius with little knowledge of how to run a business and what it takes financially to weather the first 5 years. They poured everything they had into their company, financially, mentally, and physically, working 7 days a week, to see their vision of being one of the most well known salons in San Diego come true.

Though they struggled in the beginning with cash flow issues, as well as, employee/stylist loyalty difficulties Mr. Linde and Ms. Kaplan quickly overcame these issues and have taken the beauty industry by storm. They opened Salon Radius mid-2002 and in less than a year the Salon was voted “One of the Top 22 Salons of the Year” by Salon Today Magazine for 2003. In addition, they have been featured on KUSI News Channel 9 and in Vibra Magazine.

They recently acquired their second SBA loan which has helped them to grow Salon Radius in ways they did not see possible before. This loan gave them a cash flow cushion... Read More