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Success Stories

SBA’s Eastern Penn. 2013 Minority Small Business Of The Year Small Business Week Award Winner Leverages SBA Programs For Success


Billy O. Cromedy, president of Advantage Contracting, Inc., with SBA District Director David Dickson, Jay Comyn, Advantage Contracting Senior Estimator, wife Jaclyn Cromedy, SBA Regional Administrator Natalia Olson-Urtecho, and Tania Fleming, Vice President of Milestone Bank, recently successfully directed the company to become an 8(a) certified small business.

Advantage Contracting, Inc. of Philadelphia, Pa., the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Eastern Pennsylvania Minority Small Business of the Year exemplifies how SBA programs can help small business start, grow and succeed.

Billy O. Cromedy, president of Advantage Contracting, Inc., which employs 20 people, recently successfully directed the company to become an 8(a) certified small business. SBA’s nine-year 8(a) Business... Read More

Local Company With 75 Employees World-wide Exports To Canada, South Korea, Israel, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Netherlands and Mexico

During a Feb. 2, 2013 tour of Acton Technology, Inc., a rapidly expanding small business that is exporting to nations across the globe, U.S. Small Business Administration Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Natalia Olson-Urtecho highlighted how local small businesses can benefit from SBA and Administration programs to grow, create jobs and export internationally.

Acton Technologies, Inc. leveraged SBA-backed exporting assistance from the Northeastern Pennsylvania Alliance (NEPA) International Trade Program that helped defray the cost of attending and exhibiting their products at European Trade Shows. NEPA is a regional multi-county economic development agency providing leadership, planning, expertise and services to regional and local governments, businesses, institutions and individuals through innovative and... Read More

When America’s oldest ice cream company — Philadelphia’s Bassetts Ice Cream — first opened in1861, international product distribution was unthinkable. Founder Lewis Dubois Bassett, a Quaker school teacher and farmer, made and sold ice cream from his backyard using a mule-turned churn. But, over the four generations of family ownership that followed, the Bassetts grew their home-based business into a household name across the eastern United States. From Bassetts’  headquarters in Philadelphia’s historic Reading Terminal Market, the company won customers up  and down the East coast and as far west as Chicago. Thanks to Bassetts’ heirloom family recipe and nearly 150 years of dedicated work, national prominence was in sight, but exporting internationally remained completely off the radar screen. 

But, in 2008, everything changed — both for Bassetts and for ice cream lovers as far from its Philadelphia home base as China. That year marked Bassetts’ President Michael Strange’s... Read More

Pennsylvania Culinary Firm Writes Own Ticket for Success

Kathy Wolper has some advice for fellow-small business owners: take full advantage of every business-building opportunity. 

But, for Wolper, as with many small business owners, opportunity isn’t always easily recognized or easily tapped.  So, when opportunity seems out of reach, Wolper simply creates her own.  And, according to Wolper — with the right mix of research, passion, and tenacity — other small business owners can do the same.

Wolper founded her successful cooking instruction and specialty baking business — Kathy’s Just Desserts/Cooking Wizards — when her then-employer’s bankruptcy left her unemployed.  Wolper turned that unemployment into to opportunity when she used her technical training and elementary education experience to found a business based on her life-long passion: baking.  And, when Wolper faced the challenge of financing her firm’s growth, she, once again, created her own opportunity—this time, with the help of the SBA. 

Do What You Love... Read More