Success Stories

The Colorado SBDC Network has helped thousands of entrepreneurs across every industry start and grow their business. Read about our clients’ successes and then contact us today to ensure that your small business is on the track to success.

Dry Dock Brewing Company

Dry Dock Brewing Company is an award-winning microbrewery and Aurora’s first. Established in Octo-ber 2005, Dry Dock is co-owned and operated by Kevin DeLange and Michelle Reding. Dry Dock has enjoyed tremendous success and growth in a very short time. To-date, the brewery is producing al-most 20,000 barrels of beer each year. It’s the largest brewery in Colorado that’s only distributing in-state. At the brewery on Hampden and Chambers, there’s a cozy bar with casual …

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Montrose Manor B&B

Freddie and Tom Hancock took one look at their new home in Montrose and saw something beyond a magnificent house. Their dream was to transform it into a bed and breakfast, plus a base for their not for profit animal rescue operation. Familiar with SBDC consulting services in Arizona where they had moved from, the Hancock’s contacted the SBDC for assistance in achieving their dream. Reviewing their 5-year financial forecast, the SBDC consultant provided instruction …

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Element Pet Nutrition

“Not only did I learn a great deal from these exercises, but I was also able to produce solid projections on productivity, which led to raising seed funding for my business. I even had the luxury of choosing the investor of my choice.” Element Pet Nutrition was born out of the love for dogs and cats and the mission to provide them a better quality of life. While working in a veterinary clinic, Marney Zafi …

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Meier Skis

“The whole idea is to keep it as local as possible,” says Matt Cudmore who started Meier Skis in 2009. “We emphasize home-grown, local wood and a product coming right out of Glenwood Springs.” Matt, who had been making skateboards for several years, began making the skis using primarily Colorado-grown beetle kill pine, working in a one-car garage. As the story goes, he gave up searching for “the next perfect ski” and decided to build …

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North Line GIS

North Line GIS was founded in October 2006 by Mike George and Trip McLaughlin after seeing a need for a GIS business to service the needs of the local community as well as the western slope of Colorado. Both Mike and Trip were employed full-time by others at the time of the start-up, so they were able to start the company with personal funds while building the business. Although both founders have extensive experience as …

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Express Employment Professionals

For Nina Anderson, helping people has always been a passion. Nina is the owner of Express Employment Professionals in Grand Junction, CO. Express offers a wide range of services for job seekers and employers and is a national chain. The job seekers can have their job skills evaluated so they know what skills they need training in and then can be matched with an employer that meets the job seeker’s skill set and career preference. …

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Leuallen Sales & Service

Kevin Leuallen’s grandfather, Floyde, and father, Charles, inspired him to become an entrepreneur. His father owned various food delivery routes, a donut store, a mini storage, a miniature golf course, and a liquor store along with A & W and Dairy Cream restaurants in Rifle, Colorado. As a young boy working for his grandfather, Kevin used to help out in his restaurants . Kevin also helped his dad deliver Holsom Bread in the Rifle, Colorado …

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Southern Ute Cultural Museum

Lynn Brittner, Executive Director, started planning the Southern-Ute Cultural Center and Museum over ten years ago. The Center’s opening this past May was her reward for years of dedicatedly holding the vision. Brittner’s relationship with the Southwest Colorado Small Business Development Center started way back at the beginning. She needed help and only had three staff. A grant from the Administration for Native Americans provided funds for her to take Board members to visit other …

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The Rock Lounge

Marcus Garcia has been the owner of the Rock Lounge (RL), an indoor climbing gym in Durango, since 2014. Marcus had transitioned from being a RL employee, a rock climbing guide, and owner of a small construction company before then. The RL was profitable in his first year, yet he thought there was more potential to be realized. Marcus had sent his business manager to a locally sponsored event which introduced them to the Small …

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Espinoza Cultural Services

A small business based in La Jara is proving that a San Luis Valley company can ‘play with the big boys’. Dee Espinoza founded Espinoza Cultural Services, LLC (ECS) in 2010. Espinoza ran the company by herself out of her La Jara home for the first 2 years. She now employs 13 full time professionals (although some are seasonal) and 3 part time. ECS recently purchased and renovated a vacant historic building in downtown La …

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San Luis Valley Health and Wellness

Humans are meant to move. Physical activity and good diets keep our bodies working as finely tuned machines. Not doing so, has unhealthy conseqences. Modern society has allowed for increasing inactivity in most people. Health and wellness clubs in communities play a vital role in helping their members remain motivated to pursue personal fitness goals that fit their lifestyle and share ideas on workouts, diets, and overall healthy living. Imagine being Justin and Brittany growing …

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Sweet Indulgent Creations LLC

Geneva always dreamed of starting her own bakery and has custom baked for friends and family for years. “With the assistance I received from the Southeast Colorado SBDC, I was not only able to start a new career – I was able to follow my dream of having my own small bakery. I was supported with guidance and direction to become and stay successful. One of the best things I know is at any point …

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Broken Arrow

Bob O’Borne was taught by his father at the age of 5 to shoot a long bow. When he was old enough, he harvested the mighty “Wapati” and joined the United States Air Force. He traveled around seeking out different animals with his bow until he settled in Colorado. Bob has always had a desire to own his own shop but did not have the time or opportunity. He believed, “You will never rise to …

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Sit Means Sit Dog Training

Sit Means Sit Dog Training was opened in November 2008 by Jori E. Pollard who serves as the owner and head trainer. Located in Pueblo, CO Sit Means Sit Dog Training is located at 2424 N. Freeway, Pueblo, CO 81003. Sit Means Sit Dog Training is the fastest growing dog training company in the U.S. specializing in off leash training, aggressive dogs, and difficult issues. They provide an opportunity for dog owners to develop a …

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American Wiping Rags, Inc.

Shelley McPherson will be the first to tell you that starting her own business from scratch was very challenging both mentally and physically. Even with Shelley’s past managing experience with a wiping rag business her father started in California, there were still challenges. Incorporating her dream of operating her own business with her desire to make a difference in the world through recycling led her to create a line of unique and practical products she …

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VeriClean Springs

When you meet Dee Anna Thompson, not only does she greet you with warm smile and welcoming hug, you would never know she was the President of a fast growing, award winning business based on her humble personality. Dee Anna Thompson, President of VeriClean Springs opened in 2000. At the time, Dee Anna needed to make ends meet. Given cleaning was the only experience she had coming out of high school, finding a job was …

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Midwest-Masters/ Spoiler Dude

United States Army veteran Paul Hasty had already been successfully installing window tints, car bras, and spoilers in the Pikes Peak Region for almost fourteen years before reaching out to the Pikes Peak SBDC. Just call him the Spoiler Dude of Spoilerdude.com. With a strong love for cars, Paul decided to open up his business with the challenges of educating customers. Paul differentiates Spoilerdude.com by anticipating customers’ wishes and questions with answers prior to work. …

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Power to Play Sports

With completion expected in the spring/summer of 2016, Power To Play Sports brings the first-ever Events Center of its kind for youth basketball in northern Colorado. As the premier youth organization in the Rocky Mountain region with an established clientele reaching national participation, the venture brings northern Colorado to the forefront of family-destination. Established as a full-time corporation in 2008, PTPS has quickly raised the quality of youth basketball leagues, tournaments and developmental instruction throughout …

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Aunt Helen’s Coffee House

Aunt Helen’s Coffee House is a unique, quick service restaurant that serves specialized coffee, tea, and an array of breakfast and lunch options. Owners Aimee and Bob Hutson continue to grow their business by providing high quality products, creating unique and healthy dining options, delivering an unmatched level of customer service, and giving back to the community. Aimee was a Director in the childcare service industry for most of her career, and understands the importance …

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The Little Bird Bake Shop

The Little Bird Bakeshop opened its doors on December 14, 2010 and in the past year has developed a loyal following. On any given morning, a passerby wandering through Old Town Square in Fort Collins can peer through the bakeshop’s inviting façade and watch customers sipping coffee and enjoying delicious chocolate croissants, chocolate walnut cookies, and other pastries. With its friendly atmosphere and fresh, creative confections, it will take only a glance before you walk …

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Spidertrax

Spidertrax Off-Road Thom Kingston, owner and co-founder of Loveland-based Spidertrax Off-Road, poses in the manufacturing area of his 8,000-foot space facility, where he and his staff of 16 manufacture parts for the off-road industry. Story written by: Shelley Widhalm Photos: Courtesy of Spidertrax Thom Kingston helped start Loveland-based Spidertrax Off-Road not in a garage like some startups but in a fully equipped shop at the New Jersey Institute of Technology. In 1999, Kingston and his …

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Ku Cha House of Tea

Originally from China, husband and wife entrepreneurial team, Qin Liu and Rong Pan graduated from the Leeds School of Business at Colorado University with the dream of starting their own company. The original business idea was from Qin’s Business Plan Preparation class while enrolled in CU. In 2005, they launched their business, drawing upon the 5000-year-old tradition of drinking tea. In 2007, Qin and Rong changed the company’s original name from “The Leaf – All …

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Black Swift Technologies

Boulder-based company Black Swift Technologies was founded by three PhD students from the University of Colorado. The three men were inspired to start the company from their work in the field during their studies. At CU, they learned how to chase storms and collect data using old military equipment, which is relatively complicated to use. They set out to simplify the process with unmanned aircraft systems and Black Swift Technologies was born. Although they are …

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Colorado Safety Supply

Starting out as a dream in 2012, Valerie Boyd developed her knowledge and contacts within the safety equipment industry to move forward with confidence in 2014. Valerie started to make the dream a reality. Coming from a family working in the structural steel industry, Valerie’s top priority is to keep families safe by keeping workers safe. Colorado Safety Supply does just that, providing safety training and equipment for construction job sites. Located in Aurora, Colorado …

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Denver Escape Room

For many businesses, being first to market is essential to their success. When owner Brian Lacertosa of the Denver Escape Room began planning his venture, there was nothing like it in the state of Colorado, but by the time he launched he was third to market in Denver. That didn’t stop his momentum though; just a year after opening his first location he has already opened a second location in Phoenix, Arizona, and by the …

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Safe Ride 4 Kids

Firefighter. Paramedic. Emergency responder. Over an 18 year career, Greg Durocher spent his days and nights responding to some of the most devastating collisions and catastrophes. To prevent accidents and injury, Durocher decided to learn as much as possible about child passenger safety. “As responsible drivers we can only do our very best to ensure that our precious cargo is properly restrained with the best options available,” Durocher said, “so that if a crash occurs, …

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Snooze

On any given morning, Snooze’s retro, 50’s-style space is jam-packed with people clamoring to get their names on a lengthy wait list. The draw? A stack of sweet potato or cinnamon roll pancakes, or what some have dubbed “the best breakfast burrito in the world.” A touch of upscale flair makes Snooze owner Jon Schlegel’s fare stand out among fellow bringers of breakfast and lunch. Offerings include “Vanilla Almond Oatmeal Brulée” or “Pork’s Benediction,” a …

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Timberleaf Trailers

Kevin Molick is a custom cabinet contractor and outdoorsman. The idea of building a teardrop trailer for his camping adventures intrigued him, so he built one to suit his needs. It wasn’t long before he was getting inquires on social media about how one of these trailers could be purchased. By the end of 2016 he had built and sold 12 of these custom made trailers. “The consulting and direct assistance from the Small Manufacturing …

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RoShamBo

Mallory Logan has moved from employee to owner of RoShamBo, a marketing and design shop. This out of the box creative business is celebrating its seventh year in business in Gunnison at 144 North Main Street, Suite B. The creative firm was founded by Delaney Keating who mentored Mallory to eventually take over the business.”I started as an intern when I was a graphic design student at Western in 2008, I have loved every minute …

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JITA Contracting Inc.

With the help of the SBDC, Joel Aguilar was lucky enough to get his 8 a certification for JITA Contracting, Inc. from the SBA and has grown his business tremendously. With the help of the SBDC, Joel Aguilar was lucky enough to get his 8 a certification for JITA Contracting, Inc. from the SBA and has grown his business tremendously. He explains, “It took us over five months of filling out over 1,300 pages of …

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