Gourmet Popsicle and Ice Cream Shop Enjoying Strong Start in St. Cloud
November 16, 2015
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Hal Thayer, Communications Director, FSBDC at UCF, 407.420.4850 or hthayer@ ucf.edu
Orlando – LaThesia Hardy – everybody calls her “Te” – is one of the smart ones: she knows what she doesn’t know. She knows she has a successful career in the pharmaceutical industry. But now she’s been bitten by the entrepreneurial bug and she didn’t know which way to go or even how or where to start.
So “Te” decided to start at the beginning. That’s when she found the Florida SBDC at UCF s office in Kissimmee/Osceola County. She attended the seminars and workshops offered by the FSBDC about starting a business and business fundamentals. As a result, she built her competence and confidence in her abilities related to the many facets of running her own business that she did not know.
Building from the base she gained in the seminars, she engaged with one of the FSBDC’s consultants and took advantage of their confidential, no-cost, expert counseling. Together with her consultant, she tackled putting together her ideas for the company she wanted to start and addressing the multiple questions about her start-up that would need to be answered.
“My experience with the FSBDC has been tremendous,” “Te” says. “It was great to go to the seminars and learn what I needed to learn and then have access to high quality consulting and mentorship outside of the seminars.”
As with all entrepreneurial endeavors, there were bumps in the road. “Te” was comfortable with writing her business plan because her vision for her company was clear and she knew she’d be able to articulate her goals and plans. But then there were the financial projections. They brought “Te” to a standstill. Without a background in finance, the prospect of doing sales and revenue and expense forecasts was daunting for her.
And so she turned again to her FSBDC consultant for assistance. “I was able to complete most of my business plan but I wouldn’t have been able to do the financials, “ “Te” acknowledged. “But with my FSBDC consultant Chuck Wheeler’s help, I was able to understand the financial end of my business, what I could afford and not afford and how to make reliable projections of my company’s financial performance.
All of “Te”s hard work and wise use of the FSBDC enabled her to launch her company, Chill Pop Lounge, in July of this year on N. Narcoossee Rd. in St. Cloud, FL. The Chill Pop Lounge specializes in gourmet frozen treats, with specialty ice cream choices this year and innovative – as well as gourmet and fabulous – ice popsicles starting in 2016. The business is off to a great start, and “Te” is looking forward to expanding and bringing new employees on board in the next few months. Her brother, Reginald Adams, who is retiring from the military, will co-manage the Chill Pop Lounge starting in January 2016.
“I would say to any would-be entrepreneur out there: use the FSBDC’s services!” concluded “Te”. “They have everything you need to start a business, write a business plan, and understand finances. If being an entrepreneur is not necessarily your forte, the FSBDC is the place to be.”
— FSBDC —
About the FSBDC at UCF
With its main office in the National Entrepreneur Center located at the Fashion Square Mall in Orlando, the Florida SBDC at the University of Central Florida (FSBDC at UCF) is part of the UCF Office of Research & Commercialization and the Florida SBDC Network (FSBDC Network). THE FSBDC at UCF provides business seminars and no-cost, one-on-one business consultation to emerging and established businesses. The FSBDC at UCF serves an eight-county area that includes Brevard, Flagler, Lake, Orange, Osceola, Seminole, Sumter, and Volusia counties and maintains 10 service centers across Central Florida.
In 2014, the FSBDC at UCF served more than 8,200 entrepreneurs and small business owners through consulting and training, resulting in 12,387 Central Florida jobs created, retained or saved; $1.70 billion in sales growth; $26.1 million in capital formation; $39.7 million in government contract awards; and 105 new businesses started.
About the FSBDC Network
The FSBDC at UCF is a member of the Florida SBDC Network, a statewide service network funded in part through cooperative agreements with the U.S. Small Business Administration, Defense Logistics Agency, State of Florida and other private and public partners. The Florida SBDC Network is hosted by the University of West Florida and is nationally accredited by the Association of SBDCs. All opinions, conclusions or recommendations expressed are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the SBA.
For over 35 years, the FSBDC Network has nourished a statewide partnership between higher education and economic development organizations, dedicated to providing emerging and established business owners with management and technical assistance, enabling overall growth and increased profitability for the businesses and economic prosperity for the state. The FSBDC Network is a statewide service system of 41 centers with 60 outreach locations, including the FSBDC at UCF.
In 2014, the Florida SBDCs served almost 30,000 entrepreneurs and small business owners through consulting and training, resulting in 42,644 jobs created, retained or saved; $5.8 billion in sales growth; $142.5 million in capital accessed; $210.2 million in government contract awards; and 486 new businesses started.