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Bidding a Niche Market
Jacksonville, FLA. - Kelly Munoz, President, Central Southern Construction (CSC), has grown the company from a 2-person operation to a multi-million dollar business with 72 employees within 7 years of starting. CSC is a heavy civil federal contractor and a participant in the U.S. Small Business Administration’s (SBA) 8(a) Business Development Program since 2012.
The 8(a) Business Development Program is a business assistance program for small disadvantaged businesses, designed to help them compete in the federal contracting arena. The 8(a) Program offers a broad scope of assistance to firms that are owned and controlled at least 51% by socially and economically disadvantaged individuals. Visit the SBA website for more information on the 8(a) Business Development program.
Many firms start out selling their services at the local or state levels, but Munoz started CSC with the intention of serving the federal Government as the primary client. Munoz is a Civil Engineer who was born and educated in Colombia, where she began her career. She moved to the United States in 2005 and became a licensed General Contractor in the State of Florida while working for a civil contractor as an estimator and project manager. She started her company in 2009 while on assignment on large civil construction projects such as the Panama Canal Expansion and Esti Tunnel Rehabilitation.
CSC received its first Government contract in 2012 through the Army Corp of Engineers as an 8(a) sole source contract worth $1.5 million. Participants can receive sole-source contracts, up to a ceiling of $4 million for goods and services and $6.5 million for manufacturing. Since the award, Munoz has focused the efforts of the company on serving the structural needs of the Federal Government.
The company is focused on water and sewer related structure construction; highway, street, and bridge construction; and other heavy and civil engineering construction. Munoz continues to bid on projects throughout the Southeast region of the United States. She is hands-on in every project; starting at the bid process with estimating, though the development of the contracts with submittals, and schedules.
In 2015 Munoz purchased an asphalt plant in Jacksonville, Florida for $1.9 million through a Certified Development Company (CDC) 504 loan. The 504 Loan Program provides financing for major fixed assets, such as equipment or real estate. She has also purchased a complete new fleet of paving equipment with GPS and 3-D Grade Control Systems to meet the most stringent specifications for airfield paving.
Munoz credits part of her success in Government contracting to self-performing her projects, which allows her firm to have complete control of their quality, and schedule. She also says that her success has come from concentrating on one niche or segment, and building her company’s reputation in that arena. CSC currently has offices in Florida, Mississippi, and Georgia. Munoz has also grown revenues from $3.9 million in 2012 to over $11 million at the end of 2015.
Kelly Munoz, President, Central Southern Construction, can be reached at 2410 Harper Street, Jacksonville, FL 32204 or through phone at (904) 503-2353. The company’s website is www.centralsouthern.us.