Located in Casselberry, FL Circuit Motorsports provides high quality aftermarket vehicle performance parts, service and tuning to automobile enthusiasts, specializing in performance upgrades and installations, maintenance and repair and other forms of custom work. In September 2017, Circuit Motorsports sustained physical damage due to Hurricane Irma. Tristan Sothern, CEO of the company, turned to the Florida SBDC at the University of Central Florida (UCF) for help securing a Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan. When asked about his experience with the hurricane and the assistance received, he recalled:
What type of damage occurred?
Our building was damaged, with leaking through the roof and water intrusion through the walls. Besides that, we didn’t have internet for about two and one-half weeks. We were essentially closed. It hurt revenues and cash flow and our working capital.
How helpful was the Emergency Bridge Loan?
Just getting us going again, and try to make up for those lost weeks of revenue, getting the schedule filled back up and cover payroll as we do.
How helpful was the Florida SBDC at UCF?
FSBDC was very helpful. I called in and got my questions answered, sent in the paperwork I supposed to send in. It was a pretty quick turnaround: about a week. Here I am getting a check. It all worked pretty well.
About the Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program
Administered by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, in collaboration with the Florida SBDC Network, and supported by Florida First Capital Finance Corporation (FFCFC), the Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan is a short-term, interest-free working capital loan intended to help small businesses “bridge the gap” between the time of a declared disaster and when the business has secured long-term recovery resources, such as insurance proceeds or federal disaster assistance. Governor Rick Scott activated the Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan program on Thursday, September 14 and the first loan was distributed the following Monday. Eligible businesses with two to 100 employees may apply for loans up to $50,000 for 90 or 180-day terms.
As a principal responder in the state’s Emergency Support Function for Business, Industry, and Economic Stabilization, the Florida SBDC Network supports disaster preparedness, response, recovery, and mitigation through its Business Continuation Services. As part of its service offering, Florida SBDC professionally certified consultants and disaster specialists are available to provide confidential, no-cost consulting to help affected businesses prepare disaster loan applications and with other post-disaster challenges.