Success Stories

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 companies 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

New York – Pamela Newman was pregnant with triplets when her Long Island house burned down and forced her and her husband to move in with her parents. Not long before, Newman was let go from her marketing job with a top firm in New York where she worked on such campaigns as the Slim Fast Diet program with then Los Angeles Dodgers’ manager, Tommy Lasorda.

“What it came down to was that we needed to eat,” Newman said at her company’s headquarters near JFK in Queens. “We installed a commercial telephone line in the house and started our business from my parents’ basement. That was 1991. Today we contract with six federal agencies in seven states and employ 250 people. It turned out that the triplets and the fire were actually very big blessings for us.”

This ability to turn problems into opportunities is part of the reason why the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) selected Newman as the 2017 New York State Small Business Person of the Year. As the state winner,... Read More

A Shipping Success

Mohammed Osman had been paying another company to deliver computers, DVD players, stereos, and other small electronics to his native country of Ghana for six years when he realized that he could provide better service if he shipped the equipment himself. His merchandise—also consisting of salvaged automobiles, furniture, clothing, rugs, cooking oil and other household goods—was often late reaching customers, he said, and without any kind of tracking system, he couldn’t rely on the company he was paying for shipping or its ability to deliver consistent service.

Osman described the day when he decided to start shipping the items himself. “At the time I was driving a taxi,” he said. “I saw an import/export class advertised at LaGuardia Community College, where I took my taxi driving classes.”

After the import/export class, he found himself putting more and more time into his business and less time driving taxi.

One day he was working on his business plan when he... Read More