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Success Stories

Marine wins State Veteran Owned Business of the Year Award

Jacksonville, FL --- Lauren Little, Multi-franchise Owner, Edible Arrangements was recently awarded the 2013 District and State Veteran Owned Small Business of the year. Edible Arrangements is a creator of handcrafted fruit arrangements and gourmet chocolate dipped fruit. Little opened her first franchise in 2007 in the Avondale area of Jacksonville through the assistance of an SBA backed loan. In 2009, Little purchased an existing franchise in the Mandarin area of Jacksonville. Combined her franchises are generating nearly $1 million in annual revenue, and have created 4 full-time and 16 part-time jobs for the local economy. In order to grow her business, Little initially networked at local events and meetings. She also worked closely with two SBA resource partners, including the Jacksonville Women’s Business Center (JWBC) and the Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at the University of North Florida, for technical assistance and training. For more information on the... Read More

Orlando, FL --- Andre Uribe, Co-Founder and vice president of Business Development for Power Grid Engineering, LLC (PGE), has been named the 2013 North Florida District Small Business Person of the Year. Uribe’s company has seen tremendous success, growing their electrical engineering firm from a small three person startup to a multi-million dollar corporation with nearly 100 employees in just six years.

 

Uribe attributes the company’s success to the firm’s commitment to quality assurance. Six years ago, PGE was founded on a vision to transform the way electrical engineering consultants provide service to utility clients throughout the industry when Uribe, along with his co-founders Michael Wright and Glenn Durie, identified an opportunity to improve an industry wide problem related to a lack of quality assurance standards.

 

Prior to PGE, the trio worked as electrical engineers in the area of Protection & Control for one of nation’s largest... Read More

Fort Walton Beach, FL --- Margarita Howard is the Founder and President/CEO of HX5, LLC, a U.S. Small Business Administration 8(a) and HUBzone certified company. HX5 provides professional research and development, engineering, and information technology services to U.S. Defense agencies.   

 

Ms. Howard launched HX5, LLC in 2004 after a 20-year career in executive management positions throughout various organizations that supported the Defense industry. She also used the experience she gained in the U.S. Air Force to develop critical skills such as leadership and discipline to grow her business.  Ms. Howard established HX5 with the knowledge of the value of SBA business development programs and pursuing federal contracting opportunities. 

In late 2007 and early 2008, HX5 was certified both as an 8(a) and Historically Underutilized Business Zones (HUBZone) firm.   The 8(a) Business Development Program is an important resource for small businesses seeking... Read More

Jacksonville, FL --- Pegine Echevarria, Owner and President of Team Pegine, Inc., a SBA-certified 8(a) company, was inducted into the Motivational Speakers Hall of Fame. Pegine is one of a handful of women and the only Latina woman to be honored with this distinction; this honor reflects her hard-work and personal style. Pegine goes by her first name only, and describes herself and her company as “feisty, fearless, focused, and fun”. According to the Center for Women’s Business Research, only 3 percent of all women-owned firms have revenues of $1 million or more, and Team Pegine, Inc. is one of them.   

Team Pegine, Inc. is a Jacksonville, FL based small business that provides situational role playing, event planning/management, scalable training, educational products, and speakers (including Pegine) for the federal government, Fortune 500 companies, and the defense industry. Pegine not only motivates others, she is also focused on motivating her staff and herself to attain... Read More

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