Success Stories

Chris Amato, President and CEO of Corona-based Cosmedx Science, Inc. purchased the company in 2013 after the passing of the founder.  Prior to acquiring the business, Amato had spent many years in the corporate business management world and owning numerous small businesses.  His technical consulting background and the experience of being a hands-on entrepreneur helped turn Cosmedx Science, Inc. into a diverse and sought after California exporter of private label beauty and personal care products.  

At the time Amato acquired Cosmedx, in addition to the domestic market, it was already exporting products throughout Asia.  He made a commitment to increase the export business by networking at various international trade shows in conjunction with the California Trade Alliance and sought assistance from the Center for International Trade Development. To accomplish this, Amato benefited from funding made available through the SBA-funded State Trade Expansion Program (STEP) to support... Read More

7LEAves Cafe, owned by the four Nguyen brothers Sonny, Quang, Ha, Vinh and other family members Mai Ly, Denny Ly, Triet Ho, and Viet Do first started in 2012 in Little Saigon.   Inspired by their travel experiences and the recipes they collected, the 7LEAves Cafe concept was created to provide a taste of Asian beverages to their community; a coffee and tea house that believes the key to a healthy and happy life is living in harmony with nature and humanity.   Their mission is to provide products and services that nurture, inspire, and enrich the human experience through their coffee, teas, and desserts.  So much so, they have Ghandi’s famous quotation, “Be the change you want to see in the world” hanging on the wall as a constant reminder of how they create their products and the way they serve their customers. 

7LEAves Café first opened its Little Saigon location in January 2012.  Since then, with the help of SBA financing they have expanded to nine locations in the Orange... Read More

Greg and Julie Christy accepting award

Gregory Christy and Julie Christy are Co-Founders of Brite Ideas By Greg Christy, Inc. and founded the award winning technical production company in 1989.  Gregory Christy, a Theatrical Lighting Design graduate of California State University, Fullerton, launched the company in Irvine almost 30 years ago.  The company’s offices and warehouse, currently located in Rancho Santa Margarita, were purchased in 2014 with an SBA 504 loan funded by Capital Bank and Enterprise Funding Corporation.  With Julie running the business end of things, Gregory is free to unleash his creativity, represent the company publicly, and be the firm’s top salesman. 

Brite Ideas’ production team travels to destinations and venues across the globe throughout the year.  The company’s scope of services include technical direction and design coordination; concept and idea development; theatrical and broadcast quality lighting, audio, and staging; show direction, and much more.  Christy’s design credits... Read More

The atmosphere at Cheryl Ristow’s Bohocherie boutique in Redlands, California is laid back, comfortable, and fun. There’s a big purple velvet sofa where you can sit to try on a pair of boots, or just take everything in while you enjoy a cup of coffee.  Racks of versatile, boho-chic clothing in sizes from small to 5X beg to be tried on and taken home.  Fair trade pieces share space with fringe, and signage was created by local artists, whose work is also for sale in the shop.

“I knew what kind of store I wanted,” Cheryl said. “Although for most of my career I was with the San Bernardino District Attorney’s office as an investigating technician, I worked briefly in boutique clothing stores.  I had some idea of the kind of work it takes to make it in retail. I thought, ‘If I can work this hard for someone else, I can work for myself and build the kind of business I want.’”

Once she decided to start a business, Cheryl began looking for information, help, and resources to... Read More