No matter how much confidence you have in your work, an extra pair of eyes is always a good thing. Rebecca Johnson, founder and owner of Becca’s Sweet Tooth in Bunnell, FL, is a firm believer that two heads are better than one, and that’s why she turned to the Florida Small Business Development Center at the University of Central Florida (FSBDC at UCF) for assistance.
Becca’s Sweet Tooth is a bakery and café, offering cupcakes, cookies, pastries and biscotti, and featuring Caribou Coffee, a beloved and rare premium coffee brand. Their motto is “Making life a little sweeter, one cupcake at a time.” “Here at Becca’s Sweet Tooth, I make everything here in house, all made from scratch, and all made with love,” Johnson says proudly. “I feel like that really makes a big difference.”
“The reason I sought out help from the FSBDC was that, although I have a background in restaurant and retail management, I felt like I was missing a few things, maybe a few details” recalls Johnson. “I wanted to make sure I wasn’t missing any steps or forgetting to file any paperwork. It was great to have a second set of eyes looking over everything and reminding me of anything I might have forgotten.”
The services offered by the FSBDC to entrepreneurs and business owners include no-cost, expert consulting, business training and workshops, and access to extensive market research resources. In Johnson’s case, she turned to Michael Oppenheim, an FSBDC consultant located locally in Palm Coast, for assistance with turning her dream of owning and operating a retail bakery into a reality. Over the course of nine months in 2021, Oppenheim assisted with building code and permitting issues; build out, equipment and food expense planning; financial pro forma creation and forecasting; and marketing.
“It was really helpful to have consulting from Mike Oppenheim of the FSBDC,” states Johnson. “For instance, we used the pro forma process to make sure that all my numbers were in order, like was I going to be profitable, were my food costs and pricing in line. I didn’t want anything to be inaccurate and wanted to account for everything, all the expenses I needed to plan on. It was really helpful to have all of that.”
“Working with the SBDC was great because I had another person in my corner checking in and seeing how things were going,” Johnson continued. “Mike would reach out and say ‘What can I do? Where are we at?’ and that definitely kept things on target.”
“When I first started with the FSBDC, I just had a concept. I wasn’t sure it was even feasible,” Johnson concluded. “To go from a dream I have had for over a decade to putting together real numbers; to finding a store front and getting all the renovations and construction done; to sourcing my own supplies and equipment; to go from there to opening a business.”
“Now I’ve been open a month. Customers are actually coming in. I even have repeat customers. It’s just been a super experience.” And the FSBDC is proud to have assisted Becca in making her dream come true.
For information about Becca’s Sweet Tooth, please visit https://www.beccassweettooth.com/.