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Success Stories

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

Bardstown Mills Management Team

Bardstown Mills was incorporated in 1952 as an animal feed business. Prior to that, the company was a woolen mill that began in 1820 in the Bardstown, KY area. In 1890, the business was converted to a flour mill until the present company was formed in 1952.

This is the oldest operating business in the central Kentucky area and one of the oldest in state. Bardstown Mills buys grains from local farmers and has the only grain elevator in Nelson County. The company has the capability to manufacture feed for just about any type of animal and sells feed both wholesale and retail.

Bardstown Mills has continued its farming tradition with a new 15,000 square foot retail center that was financed with an SBA 504 loan. In the new building, the company offers a full line of local produce, honey, fresh eggs, farm supplies, feeding and watering equipment, fencing and gates, hay and straw, medications, animal health aides, pet supplies, farm toys, work clothing, boots, gardening... Read More

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