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Success Stories

From Unemployment to Entrepreneurship

Michael Baher found himself in a situation we are all too familiar with these days… unemployment. He constantly searched the classifieds and interviewed with local companies, but wasn’t satisfied with the available positions. He then decided to put fate in his own hands and become a small business owner.

Michael and his wife Cheryl saw a need for a packing and shipping store that would be open for extended hours and allow customers the capability to compare shipping rates.  The duo started researching franchise opportunities, but quickly realized the upfront cost just wouldn’t work for them. They decided to open an independent store where they had the flexibility to ship with all carriers instead of just one.

Michael and Cheryl emptied their 401k and embarked on a great adventure. In November of 2010, that adventure took on the West Virginia friendly name of Mountain State Pack & Ship, LLC.

Michael and Cheryl were able to open Mountain State Pack & Ship... Read More

Tucked away in the hills of Parkersburg West Virginia, Rolling Ridge Woods exports logs and lumber from the heart of the Appalachian region to countries all over the world.

Eugene Walters, the General Manager, credits the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Export Working Capital Program for keeping the company in business when the economy was in a recession. “We are deeply tied to the housing market and when the housing market took a hit, business was tough for a few years,” Walters said.

Although a forester by trade, Walters’ business sense is second to none. While attending a West Virginia Development Office meeting, Walters had a casual conversation with Leslie Drake from the US Export Assistance Center that may have saved the company.

Drake recommended the SBA Export Working Capital Program to help Walters shorten the payment cycle between the delivery of the goods and the payment for the product. “Because of the Export Working Capital Program, we have... Read More

SBA Loan Program Equals Jobs For Morgantown Economy

Dr. Kevin Trembush, owner of Advantage Health & Wellness, PLLC in Morgantown is looking for the wave of the future in preventative health care.

“Today’s healthcare system seems to be too dependent on drugs and surgery to fix a medical issue,” said Trembush. “It makes better sense to try to understand the cause of the ill health and correct that through basic life style adaptions, nutritional intake, and reduction of stress to allow your body to be healthy.”

At his healthcare facility, Trembush focuses on physical, functional medicine to integrate other healthcare provider educations and philosophies into a single program whose focus is on achieving and maintaining health, using drug or surgeries as a last resort. The chiropractic doctor is combining the knowledge of chiropractors, physical and massage therapists, nutritionists and medical doctors to naturally treat patients to better manage their health concerns and issues.

Before Trembush could bring all... Read More

SBA Funding Brings New Concept in Total Car Care to Morgantown

On any given day in Morgantown it can be extremely difficult to maneuver through the streets of this thriving metropolis. From the traffic generated by West Virginia University, local hospitals, small businesses and federal agencies, automobiles are everywhere.

Morgantown resident and businessman Ismail Latif didn’t see the traffic as a nuisance, but an opportunity. “With all the vehicles moving in and around Morgantown and the hectic pace of everyday life, car owners needed a place they could go for total car care.”

Latif did a bit of research and found that AAMCO, which was primarily focused on transmissions, was broadening their expertise to include total car care. He made a few inquiries and soon had the 54-year-old company interested in opening their new concept center in Morgantown.

In order to make the car care center a reality, Latif was going to need some capital. He had previously used Huntington National Bank to fund a Quiznos franchise in Morgantown... Read More