Fabiola Giguere came to this country in 1989 as an ambitious young woman who was determined to achieve the American Dream that she had so often heard about in her native country of Peru. After arriving here, she quickly realized that although this was the land of opportunity that she’d have to work really hard to achieve her dreams. Fabiola’s sales position at a jewelry store helped her orient herself to her new life in Connecticut and after several years here, she decided that she wanted to control her own destiny and organized a meeting with her family to propose creating a cleaning company.
In 1992, the then 23 year old Fabiola became the sole proprietor of Limpiex Cleaning Services, a full service cleaning company which provides janitorial services, carpet cleaning, stripping and waxing of floors, upholstery cleaning, window washing, hospital disinfection, outside maintenance and pest control. Although she had no prior experience in this industry, Fabiola’s hard work and tenacity as well as the support of her family compensated for what she lacked. She set up an office before she had any clients and visited SCORE for help with a business plan while her sister helped her create a marketing plan. Her family helped distribute flyers and make business cards and brochures which was how small businesses marketed their new companies in 1992 prior to the widespread usage of the Internet.
Luckily, Fabiola was a quick learner and met the right people along the way. She met and hired a Guatemalan woman who worked in the commercial cleaning business and taught her how use the proper cleaning equipment and best products to achieve high-level quality cleaning. Her supplier also became a friend and referred her to the company’s seminars so that she could learn how to use the products safely and efficiently and also provided her with excellent leads. With a close network of friends and family and terrific word-of-mouth references she began to grow quickly and increase her staffing levels and grow revenues.
In Fabiola’s quest for growth, she inquired about doing business with the government. She went to University of New Haven where their business department helped her put together a package for SBA’s 8(a) Business Development Program. Once she became 8(a) certified, she entered into a Mentor-Protégée Agreement where she learned the ins and outs of working with the government. A Business Opportunity Specialist at SBA’s Connecticut District Office helped Fabiola navigate her nine years in the 8(a) program where Limpiex won multiple federal contracts with GSA for a total dollar amount of approximately $3 million.
Success has not always come easy for Fabiola these past 22 years. In Limpiex’s early years, her abilities were questioned because she was a female and a minority. As a result, she became a tough negotiator, went on to hire each of her company’s 125 employees all of whom she knows by name and is nearing completion of her Master’s Degree to firm up her credentials. Most recently she landed the accounts of seven new Yale Hospital buildings.
Finally, in 2014 Fabiola was named the Connecticut SBA’s 8(a) Graduate of the Year award winner. She continues to give back to her local community by presenting at SCORE workshops and the Hamden Rotary and by mentoring a small cleaning service in Clinton that wants to transition into commercial cleaning. Fabiola is a true role model for all those who aspire to achieve the American Dream.