Coastal Now – Small Business Development Center

Coastal Now – Small Business Development Center


The Trojan Cow food truck. I do gourmet
burgers, loaded fries and then pulled chicken sandwiches. And AR Workshop
Myrtle Beach. AR Workshop is a do-it-yourself workshop where you can
come in and make your own home decor from scratch. Two businesses without a lot
in common, except that they both received help from
the Small Business Development Center at Coastal Carolina University. They walked me
through everything from SBA loans, to private investors, to bank loans. They
helped me ask the right questions as I was considering purchasing the franchise
rights. Located on Coastal’s campus, the Myrtle Beach Area Small Business
Development Center operates in partnership with the Small Business
Administration. We have the real world feet on, boots on the ground kind of
perspective. The office has offered confidential counseling to thousands of
people through the years. We help folks that are anybody looking to start a
business. We also help clients that have a business. This office serves Horry and
Georgetown counties. We are a gem that a lot of people don’t know where we are
and what we do. The list of services provided is lengthy. We talk about
business planning, management, marketing, legal structures, financing options,
really, you name it, if it’s small business related we can do it. Starting a small
business can be confusing and full of anxiety. It’s not easy and it takes a
certain type of person or a certain type of team. I was lucky enough to have a
team. Drew Basilicato’s team includes the Small Business Development Center and
specifically Bernita Platt. I do have, you know, Bernita’s name on the truck,
because she definitely helped me out and made this possible. Drew says he would
probably still be lost without help from Bernita
and the Center. I was in over my head. I sat down with Bernita and she kind of
just gave me like, almost like the paint-by-numbers way to go about this. It
just seemed very doable. AR Workshop is a side business for
Christi Rippy. I’m great at research and researching skills, but not necessarily
opening a business. This was brand new to me. Christi didn’t have to travel far for
assistance, from her job with Coastal’s Office of Philanthropy. I took the idea
to them and I said, what do you think of this and do you think this is a viable
business. She ended up receiving more from the Center than she ever imagined.
It was surprising for sure, in that it was free of cost, there was no cost to me.
All I had to do was ask for help. Christi is just one of many individuals
from the Coastal Carolina University community that have gotten that help. We
have a lot of graduates and professors who come to us for that entrepreneurial
experience. Drew and Christi both, see the services provided by the Small Business
Development Center as a good complement to CCU’s primary mission. If you’re a
business owner, you can still do stuff and Coastal Carolina can still help you
make that real. I think it’s just a great part of that economic impact of Coastal.
The Center has plenty of success stories, such as those represented by Drew and
Christi. It’s kind of like a spiritual thing, when you start working with
someone and you help them to realize their dream. Those who have realized
their dreams under the Center’s guidance end up being among its most ardent
supporters. I think it should be your first stop, as you’re considering opening
a business.

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