Success Stories

32 Employees

Bahama Bucks Franchise Corporation is owned and operated by father and son, Paul and Blake Buchanan, as well as their long-time friend, Eric Lee.

In the summer of 1990, Blake Buchanan opened the first Bahama Buck's. He started with one ice shaver and the hope of a college job that didn't involve mowing grass or flipping burgers. Constructing the original store by hand, he enlisted volunteer help from three generations of his family, staffed it with friends and college students, and opened the doors.

The tropical sensation caught on, and with the help of his wife, Kippi, and his friend, Eric Lee, the summer job turned into a full-time vocation.

Working to keep the spirit of the original Bahama Buck's alive, they make sure that each franchise is operated with the same enthusiasm as the first Buck's. The entire Bahama Buck's team strives to ensure that each flavor becomes a favorite and each visit is a great time, every time.

Bahama Buck... Read More

After serving in the United States Air Force for 20 years, African American businessman, Nelson Wilson began his second career in the musical business.  Wilson started working at S&M Music Company where he learned the retail and service side of the business.   Three years later, he was given the opportunity to purchase the business from the previous owner.  With the help from his lender Leslie Ellis of First State Bank of Abilene, and direct assistance from employees of the Lubbock SBA Office, he was able to secure an SBA loan in order to purchase the business.  He immediately changed the name of the business to Nelson’s Organ Service Center and focused more of his time on the service side of the business and began tuning pianos, repairing electronic keyboards and organs.  Currently, he does most of his work for churches in Abilene and in the surrounding communities.

When he began, there were three other music stores in Abilene, but all three have had to close their... Read More

Maria Valeriano Insurance Agency

Maria Valeriano first consulted with the UTPB Small Business Development Center with a vision of starting her own insurance agency. She had a great deal of experience in the insurance business and was looking to obtain a bank loan to help realize her dream. The center worked closely with Maria and eventually completed a very professional business plan that she could present confidently to her bankers. Maria is a very determined individual and this determination to open her business meant that she listened to, and acted upon, all the advice given to her by the counselors at the SBDC. Maria’s application for a business loan was strong and well-prepared, but also she was timely and cooperative about providing the bankers with all additional data that they required.

Maria obtained a $25,000 loan that enabled her to open her business. She continues to use the services of the SBDC and enjoys their advice and assistance. She continued to show her appreciation to the SBDC by... Read More