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Success Stories

Sidehill Farm

A specialty food company in Brattleboro is being recognized by the Small Business Administration.

Sidehill Farm, owned by Kelt and Kristina Naylor, is named the SBA’s 2014 Vermont Family-Owned Business of the Year. Sidehill Farm produces and sells a variety of jam, fruit butter and drizzle, which is a combination of maple syrup and fruit. The annual award honors a family-owned and operated business which has been passed from one generation to the next and is successful in sales, profits and increasing jobs.

Kelt’s parents, Ben and Dot Naylor, started the company in 1976 on their farm in Calais, Vt. and ran Sidehill Farm from their home for the next 24 years. The company was passed to Kelt and his wife Kristina in in 2000 when the two left their home in Boston to take over the family business. To be more centrally located in New England and expand the company, Sidehill Farm’s operations moved from Calais to the Cotton Mill in Brattleboro.

According to Kristina,... Read More

Super Thin Saws named 2014 Vermont Exporter of the Year.

By Danny Monahan
SBA Vermont Public Information Officer

A small business in Waterbury, Vt. was recently named the 2014 Vermont Exporter of the Year.

Super Thin Saws produces and exports thin circular sawblades. The thinner blades reduce waste when cutting raw materials over that of traditional thicker saw blades, which saves companies money and resources over time.

“Being named Exporter of the Year is absolutely terrific,” said John Schultz, Super Thin Saws president. “It is of course, a very nice image to portray to prospects, but perhaps more importantly, it also serves as a confirmation to us that we are on the right track with our business plan.”

The Small Business Exporter of the Year Award is presented annually by the Small Business Administration to an individual or individuals who own and operate a Vermont small business engaged in exporting. Nominations are primarily evaluated based on increased sales, profits and growth of employment... Read More

Joe Bossen II, 27, is awarded the 2014 Vermont Young Entrepreneur of the Year by the Small Business Administration.

By Danny Monahan
SBA Vermont Public Information Officer

They can lower cholesterol, build soil, and more than double in size when cooked.

These are some of the benefits of beans, according to the founder and owner of Vermont Bean Crafters. For his efforts in fostering a more nutritious and sustainable food culture in the Northeast, Joe Bossen II, 27, is awarded the 2014 Vermont Young Entrepreneur of the Year by the Small Business Administration.

The annual award is presented to business owners under 35 who have had success in sales, profits, increasing jobs, having innovative business methods and demonstrating entrepreneurial potential necessary for economic growth.

“We make a wide variety of bean products from burgers and falafel, to hummus and cookies, all gluten-free, vegan, and nut-free,” said Bossen. “Our beans are mainly from organic farms in Vermont and New York, and most of our other ingredients are locally grown and organic as well.”

... Read More

By Danny Monahan, SBA Vermont Public Information Officer

Twelve years ago a fledgling brewery in Burlington, Vt. consisted only of a lone brewmaster crafting an unfiltered ale for a few select bars in the area.  Today, Switchback Brewery Co. is one the most heralded breweries in Vermont selling its beer throughout the Northeast to restaurants, resorts and stores.

The brewery’s owners, Bill Cherry and Jeff Neiblum, are awarded the Vermont Small Business Person of the Year, for growing their brewery, expanding the brand and increasing sales.

Cherry and Neiblum, who have been friends since college, always talked about opening a brewery. After all, Cherry had experience working for both a microbrewery and large American brewing company, and Neiblum had experience running his own company.

In 2000, the job that brought Cherry to Vermont ceased production, so he began developing a business plan. By 2002 Switchback was up and running.

 “What started as a... Read More