The holidays are just around the corner and many of us are feeling the shopping crunch. This year, it is more important than ever to support our small and local businesses across the country. Having weathered the ongoing pandemic and navigated many challenges, our small businesses have continued to serve our communities.
This country is made up of many small businesses, most of which started as just an idea. For many of them, the Small Business Administration (SBA) is an essential tool in helping entrepreneurs both start and grow their businesses. SBA has also helped many of these small businesses stay afloat through the pandemic.
As just one example of the many small businesses SBA has helped, we wanted to share the story of Jeff and Jennifer, who have grown their company into a leader in the craft beverage industry.
In 2012, Jeff and Jennifer set out to bring mead (wine made from honey), the world’s oldest fermented beverage, back into style. They opened a meadery in their basement less than ten years ago. Today their Arizona company has developed over 200 unique products, owns a production facility that distributes to 36 countries, and employs around 25 people. Though Jeff and Jennifer have many secrets to their success, SBA played a crucial role in the growth of their company.
Jeff and Jennifer have received three SBA-backed loans to help their business grow and expand. Their first loan helped them to design and build a professional production facility and their second loan assisted with purchasing equipment. With their third SBA loan, Jeff and Jennifer purchased a historic building that will be the world’s first-ever mead and food pairing restaurant.
SBA not only provided support and direction, but they also guided Jeff and Jennifer through their growth and expansion. SBA connected Jeff and Jennifer to different government resources that were essential in transitioning their idea into a thriving company. With the support of SBA and countless others, Jeff and Jennifer successfully reintroduced the world’s oldest fermented beverage to us all.
Watch this video about Jeff and Jennifer to learn more about their small business journey.
When you are considering what gift to give your aunt, cousin, or niece, think about visiting your local businesses and supporting them this holiday season. Your business makes all the difference.
Entrepreneurs around the country are eager to start small businesses, but often don’t know how to start or lack the necessary resources. If you have a business idea and need help making it a reality, visit sba.gov or connect with an SBA resource partner near you for free business counseling and training.