Success Stories

When Tony Carusso walked into a Camp Bow Wow franchise in 2007, he knew his life was about to change.  The leasing company he worked for was closing and Tony was contemplating his next move.  “When I saw happy dogs playing side by side, I just felt that I belonged in this business,” said Carusso.  Only 29 when he started, Carusso says, “It was the best move of my life.” 

Armed with a cash bonus, retirement funds, and the determination to succeed, Carusso went looking for a bank loan to help him purchase his own franchise.  As the recession deepened and credit tightened in 2007, Carusso worried whether he’d be able to get a loan.  But the self-proclaimed numbers geek put together a thorough business plan with financial projections that impressed the bank.  

The company received an SBA 504 loan for $413,000 and an SBA guaranteed loan for $183,200.  “The process was easy and the SBA did a great job,” said Carusso. 

The Colorado-based franchise was the perfect... Read More

During the Senior PGA (SPGA) Championship presented by KitchenAid at Harbor Shores local small business owner Dan Harbison of Rover Security Guard Agency, was contracted as the security contractor for the SPGA. Rover Security is a licensed and bonded security firm located in Benton Harbor and has been providing security services since 1986.

Due to this tremendous opportunity Dan found himself facing a temporary expansion of his normal staffing of 10 to 15 security guards to an additional 100 people for the two week engagement. Not only was Dan faced with quickly screening, hiring, and training staff he also needed to make sure a mechanism was in place to cover the additional payroll cost. Dan knew he needed some assistance and sought it through area organizations.

To facilitate the hiring of as many local residents as possible, Dan turned to the Consortium for Community Development. Thanks to the assistance received, over 95% of his temporary staff were Benton Harbor... Read More

For over twenty-five years J. Perez Construction Inc. has provided construction services for many commercial and government projects ranging in levels of complexity and cost, and located in areas remote from their corporate and regional offices. They are a full-service general contractor with corporate office in Flint, Michigan and a hub office in San Antonio, Texas.

J. Perez Construction Inc. is a privately owned company has evolved over the years from performing small contracts to contracts worth millions.  A 100% Minority owned firm, it is certified as an SBA 8(a) client and is also HUBZone certified.  As a small disadvantaged business concern, the 8(a) certification has made it possible for J. Perez Construction Inc. to solicit projects offered by the federal government which, in tum, has allowed for growth within the company.   The company has increased sales from $2.03 million in 2006 to $3.53 million in 2011. 

J. Perez Construction Inc. provides superior... Read More