Located in Altamonte Springs, FL Jimmy Hula’s is a quick-casual restaurant with island/California/surf theme offering fish tacos, burgers, sandwiches, beer & wine. In September 2017, Jimmy Hula’s sustained physical damage to their facility. Blake C. Blair, Managing Member 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?
We experienced a total loss of the awning, exterior fans, electrical conduit. We had damage to landscaping, trees & limbs, and some areas of the building. Loss of power meant complete spoilage of all of our refrigerated food. Nine (9) days with no power meant we were closed and lost revenue for all that time.
How helpful was the Emergency Bridge Loan?
Just like the title, it bridges the gap and gives me the funds necessary to get repairs done before the insurance claim comes back to me. It gets us up and running again, and means we can get revenue flowing again.
How helpful was the Florida SBDC at UCF?
They were very helpful and quick. Guided me through what I needed to do. Turnaround was fast. Had a check to me in less than a week. I’d recommend them to anyone in a disaster recovery situation.
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.