Success Stories

BIO Photo

Brief description of the business: Formed in October 2003 in Pennsylvania, Transposagen Biopharmaceuticals, Inc. relocated to Kentucky in January 2008 where it has since established itself as a leading gene editing company. The company differentiates itself from competitors by “offering unique gene editing technology, strong intellectual property and advanced technical capabilities.” Transposagen products and services include off-the-shelf gene editing reagents, custom cell line engineering and custom animal model creation. The company has provided off-the-shelf and custom genetically modified rats, mice and cell lines to many of the premier scientific companies and institutions around the world. Transposagen’s team of experts understands the challenges of biomedical research, and works one-on-one with customers to ensure delivery of the best models and reagents to fit their exact needs.

In November 2014, Transposagen entered a major research collaboration and worldwide... Read More

Photo of Ray Takigiku, Ph.D. co-founder of Bexion Pharmaceuticals

Brief description of the business:

New estimates show the cost of developing a single prescription drug that gains market approval at $2.6 billion. The further a drug goes into this process, from R&D to clinical trials to manufacturing, the more costly this financial roadblock becomes. Although it was a hurdle for Kentucky-based Bexion Pharmaceuticals, the team will not give up on what is shaping up to be perhaps a life-changing and sought after cancer treatment. This first-in-class biologic, BXQ-350, provides a novel mechanism of action for targeting and eliminating tumor cells.

“Our technology targets ubiquitous areas on tumors – all solid tumors express a certain type of fat molecule which our drug essentially attacks and causes the tumor to die,” explains company founder, Dr. Ray Takigiku. “It’s a synthetic structure that is identical to a human protein in managing cellular debris. First, through recognition of that fat molecule on tumor cells, this protein... Read More

Photo of Strategic Communications Founder Kathy Mills (center) with SBA staff.

Brief description of the business: Strategic Communications is a value-added reseller of IT products and services, providing fully integrated voice, video and data solutions to healthcare, commercial, education and government sectors.

SBA Assistance: In business since 1994, the company received 8(a) certification in 2004. At that time, 95% of its business was in the private sector, so CEO and Founder Kathy Mills immediately assigned a dedicated person to pursue government 8(a) contract opportunities. Unfortunately, Ms. Mills did not have an 8(a) mentor and was unaware of the correct path to follow to be successful in obtaining awards. She did not engage with the SBA Kentucky District Office and was unaware of how SBA personnel could assist her business, so it took the company three years before obtaining a contract. Ms. Mills eventually contacted the Kentucky District Office 8(a) Business Development Specialist, Robert Coffey, who introduced Ms. Mills to a recent 8(a)... Read More

Photo of Scott Shinn

SBA Assistance: Scott Shinn is the President and CEO of Sustainment Solutions, Inc. (SSI) and the 2015 SBA KY Small Business Person of the Year. The company is a Veteran-Owned, HUBZone certified business and is a recent recipient of funding from the the STEP program for export assistance. Mr. Shinn also has received assistance from the SBDC in Lexington and the Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC), which is administered now by the Kentucky SBDC Network. He volunteers for the SCORE-Lexington Chapter as well.

Veteran Owned Business: SSI is a Veteran-Owned Small Business owned by Scott and Amanda Shinn. As an Air Force veteran, Scott understands the value of veterans as employees, and most who work for SSI are veterans.

How Business Was Started: Mr. Shinn has over 20 years of Electrical/Military Discipline field experience. He career began in the U.S. Air Force in 1993, serving in Alaska and was later deployed in Operation Enduring Freedom and Southern Watch.... Read More