Success Stories

Expanding and reaching greater efficiencies with the SBA 504

by Norman Eng, Public Affairs Specialist


Soccer in America is continuing to grow in popularity and becoming big business. 

Outside of the United States, soccer is the most popular sport in the world. As of May 2015, over 24.4 million people play soccer in the United States.[1]  The number of participants in U.S. high school soccer recorded an all-time high in the 2016/17 season, with over 800,000 boys and girls playing the sport across the country.[2]

Over 25 years ago as soccer’s popularity began, Michael O’Connor started working at Gotshalk’s – a 3rd generation department store based in New England.

Gotshalk’s landed the country’s first Nike account and added a sporting goods section, where Michael started working in the soccer department of the store.   As big box stores began establishing its sporting department business and evolving the retail climate – local department stores... Read More

Attaining business continuity with the SBA 504

By Norman Eng

On Martha’s Vineyard where space is at a premium, RISE Vineyard Performing Arts is operating out of a modest 1,933 sq. ft. dance studio and still trying to sustain growth.

Owner and Director, Jil Matrisciano started RISE Vineyard Performing Arts in 2007 – with the goal of providing island youth with a classical dance education in a studio environment.

Matrisciano has been performing and teaching in the Martha’s Vineyard community since arriving in 1996.  Today, she is creating a safe space for dance education – and a place for students to create, express, discover and support each other. 

Attaining Business Continuity: Renting to Purchasing with the SBA 504
Matrisciano had been renting from her landlord for the last 10 years, before he came to her and said it was time for him to sell.  The landlord wanted to give Jil the first option to buy the building, before a new owner... Read More

Grants and Technical Assistance available to help Boston small businesses grow

By Norman Eng, Public Affairs Specialist


Small businesses in the City of Boston have a wealth of resources available to help them start and grow.  In addition to support from the SBA resource network – Boston-based business owners can access free trainings, technical assistance and grants from the local government.

As the owner of the building at 1290 Blue Hill Avenue in the Boston neighborhood of Mattapan, Denise O’Marde needed a little assistance and took advantage of available resources to transform her idea into reality.  


Storefront improvement grants available from local government
The big obstacle for O’Marde was updating her building to conform to modern food service standards.  In order to bring the building up to commercial code with the city’s inspectional services department, O’Marde learned that she had to replace all of the plumbing in the... Read More

Coaching and capital from MSBDC and MGCC help businesses grow

By Norman Eng, Public Affairs Specialist


A football player, Jeff McSharry sustained several knee injuries throughout his high school and college playing career.  Friends got him to take yoga classes for his injuries, and that’s when he began realizing the health benefits of yoga.

In 2009, a friend founded KULAE, where McSharry started working as the sales director.  After about six years of building the business and polishing Jeff ‘s skills to eventually take over the business, the founder wanted to exit and sell the business to McSharry so he could focus on other projects. 

MSBDC Business Development Coaching
When McSharry took over as owner of KULAE, he began getting more focused in all aspects of the business and started meeting more regularly with a business mentor he saw speak at a business seminar – Jill Beresford of the Massachusetts Small Business Development Center.... Read More