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Success Stories

Excel Management

Nearly twenty years ago, Curtis Jewell was struggling to make a living and develop a career when he came to a life-changing realization: "I realized that I was selling 'stuff' that I didn't believe in and if I had to live by this 'stuff,' I'd never make it." He decided that if he was going to take care of his wife and give his children the best education, he would have to become an entrepreneur. Then, in 1989, after spending 4 years learning the computer business with Morgan Management Systems, Inc., he ventured out on his own and single-handedly started EXCEL Management Systems, Inc., which is now a thriving computer consulting firm employing over 100 people.

EXCEL provides focused professional IT services to commercial and federal, state, and local government agencies. They provide enterprise wide field-based IT services to geographically dispersed agencies and companies including desktop, servers, and connectivity management; voice and network integration &... Read More

Information Works, Inc.

Joe Vesco, President of Information Works, Inc. of Columbus is the Ohio Small business Person of the Year for 2004. Joe was selected above all other candidates based on the following criteria: staying power, growth in number of employees, increases in sales, current and past financial reports, innovative products or services offered, response to adversity and contributions made to the community.

Joe has managed to do what few other entrepreneurs have been able to accomplish. He has successfully managed to differentiate his company from all the others in an industry where the competitors all offer essentially the same service. Joe is in the business of supplying laser printing services to business. By taking an innovative approach to this basic service, coupled with some proprietary service software, Information Works has been able to offer their customers a quality product, on time at a reduced cost.

Joe's career has revolved around the design, development... Read More

The Painted Lady, LLC

Shortly after Joyce Whitaker, and her husband, moved back to Ohio from New York, Joyce decided to open a small gift gallery and antique store. Joyce came from a corporate background, but needed some oversight and advice in marketing and business plan development. She sought that advice from a group of volunteer business advisors called SCORE: "Counselors to America's Small Business" . SCORE assisted her in developing her business plan and pointed her to other resources available to women owned businesses.

She and her mother successfully ran that business for five years. In 1994, she purchased a Victorian home and opened a Tea Room along with the gift gallery. The business became known as The Victorian Painted Lady, LLC. She felt the town of Marysville needed a restaurant with ambiance and character. Converting the 3,000 square foot Victorian house to an upscale tea room and gift shop met that need. The house is one of just a few made of ceramic block and is on the Ohio... Read More

Creative Shapes

Creative Shapes is an Ohio Subchapter S Corporation founded in 1986. The company is a manufacturer of custom designed cabinets and office furniture products. The company differentiates itself from the competition by providing the highest quality density board and laminate surfaces to a custom design. In 2002, Victoria Archable acquired the company and significantly expanded the scope of the business. Ms. Archable has used SBA loan guarantees to acquire new equipment and has directed the company into new markets, both consumer and commercial, generating a significant increase in revenues.

Creative Shapes was an old company with new leadership. Ms. Archable realized she needed a plan to achieve the growth she was sure the company was capable of generating. She also knew that she had to significantly control expenses in the soft economy of 2002 and 2003.

The Manufacturing SBDC at TechSolve provided business plan consulting and then assisted Creative Shapes in... Read More