Florida FSBDC at UCF Program Provides High Level Support
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 27, 2015
Contact: Hal Thayer, Communications Director, FSBDC at UCF, 407.420.4850 or firstname.lastname@example.org
For a small to medium-sized business, growth can be as much of a challenge as a revenue decline. And managing rapid growth was the problem, albeit a good problem, confronting Screenworks USA, a multi-million dollar screen printing, embroidery and dye sublimation business that supplies theme parks and other entertainment companies with customized apparel (t-shirts) and other wearables.
Co-owners Sharad Mehta, President and Brian DiZavala, Executive Vice President and COO wanted to be certain they were steering Screenworks and its growing business in the right direction. Based upon very positive past experiences Mehta had had with the Florida SBDC at UCF and its Advisory Board Council program, the company applied for and was approved for another Advisory Board Council.
The Florida SBDC at UCF’s Advisory Board Council (ABC) is an economic development program that creates a no-cost professional advisory service for local companies. By acting as a matchmaker between businesses and volunteer advisors, all of whom are professionals in the community, the Advisory Board Council program acts to provide companies with business expertise that can directly address the company’s issues and that would otherwise be cost prohibitive and unavailable to a small to medium- sized business. And the contribution that Advisory Board Council assistance can make covers many sides of a business including operations, marketing, financial management, cost reduction, leadership development and succession planning, among others.
Mehta and DiZavala worked with Advisory Board Council Program Manager Jill Kaufman, who hand-picked a team of board members to address the company’s needs and manage their growth. Experts in corporate finance, operations and marketing, comprised Screenworks’ board of advisors. The Board met with Mehta and DiZavala quarterly for review and counseling on a variety of issues, including operations and growth management strategies.
Over the course of the board’s tenure, Mehta and DiZavala made some important decisions about how they wanted to grow their business going forward and took some strategic options they were considering off the table. “We had very experienced people on our board. We made sure we were well prepared for each meeting and had a clear picture of our company’s direction and our financial performance,” Mehta said. “As a result, over time a strategy for the company’s growth became clear.”
According to Mehta and DiZavala, the assistance of their Advisory Board Council has paid handsome dividends for Screenworks. “Our success has come as a result of some of the efforts of our Advisory Board and has helped us not only quadruple our sales but also increase our employee base by about 100 and build our building,” remarked DiZavala.
“I do not think any business which is growing should be without an Advisory Board Council,” commented Mehta. “Every business can benefit from using not only the services of the FSBDC but also an Advisory Board Council. I wouldn’t want to be a company without an ABC. And I recommend every business in Central Florida avail themselves of all the resources that the FSBDC offers.”
— 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.
FSBDC at UCF | 3201 E. Colonial Drive | Orlando, FL 32801 | p 407.420.4850 | f 407.420.4862