Success Stories

Dr. Yelena Ladyzhenskaya had been renting her 30 year-old dental office located on a secondary street for more than a decade when she decided to purchase her own space and become her own landlord.

She dreamed of a brightly-lit, newly-renovated office that would be visible to pedestrians and designed to her specifications. Owning her own space would not only eliminate the variable of paying monthly rent, but it would also allow her to expand, to update, to scale her practice and to create an asset that might become a source of income after she retired and provide her daughter with revenue in the future.

She couldn’t believe it when she discovered the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), 504 loan: For only $205,000 down, Dr. Ladyzhenskaya was able to purchase a $1.9 million ground-floor commercial condo on a busy street just four blocks from the space she’d been renting. She would remain in close proximity to her existing clients and be visible to passersby that... Read More

Tammy Kwan, co-Founder and CEO of Cognitive ToyBox, said the abundance of “Digital Candy” on the market – downloadable apps for children that entertain but don’t educate – inspired her company to create evidence-based learning apps for children.

“Digital media is an increasingly important component of a child’s life,” Kwan said. “Between the ages of two and four-years, they spend an average of two hours engaged with a digital device. Our research has shown that most of this time, however, they’re just consuming digital candy.”

Kwan said she saw an opportunity to change the status quo.

“I watched some popular companies get hit with Federal Trade Commission (FTC) complaints for making false or deceptive claims about their products, so I decided to create apps that are backed by real academic research,” she said.

Kwan started her company in 2015 while finishing her Master in Business Administration (MBA) at New York University (NYU). Combining this with her... Read More

New York - Bob Chory, CEO of Valente Yeast, a century-old ingredient company in Queens, NY, said that every meeting with his SCORE Advisory Board teaches him something new about running his company that he hadn’t considered before.

“It’s like that feeling you get after someone gives you a suggestion and you don’t want to admit it but you see right away that they know better and you should listen to their advice,” Chory said. “Each member of our Advisory Board has been there before with their own company so they can see down the road and make suggestions based on situations we haven’t even thought of yet.” 

One example was the time Chory’s Advisory Board told him and business partner Tom Siegenthaler to end their cash-and-carry service because it didn’t make financial sense.

“It was an old part of our business that we thought customers relied on, but when we saw how much it cost us compared to the $60,000 it brought in, we realized that we had to let it go,”... Read More

SBA Helped Cycling Company Control its Costs

Andrew Motola, owner of Long Island’s Brickwell Cycling and Multisport, said that diving into the 54-degree water of the San Francisco Bay during the Escape from Alcatraz triathlon took his breath away and made his body go numb.

“It’s a leap of faith - there’s that second right after you come out of the water when you can’t breathe, and you have to swim or you’ll drown,” Motola said. “But then you get your breath back, and next you start swimming, and eventually you reach the shore.”

Though Motola described a triathlon, he could have been talking about owning a small business.

In 2007, he purchased a long-established family bike shop in Great Neck after a corporate career. He wanted to work at something he really loved and build a community around engagement in cycling and triathlon. Through the last decade, he’s expanded his business to four stores on Long Island, including one he recently opened at 7 Northern Boulevard in Greenvale.

When his lease... Read More

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