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October 6, 2017

Next Start Your Own Business Workshop on 10/19 in Springfield

Filed under: SRDC — admin @ 3:48 pm

The Vermont Small Business Development Center (VtSBDC) would like to announce an upcoming workshop for those thinking about starting their own business. This workshop, titled ‘Starting Your Own Business,’ is aimed at helping future entrepreneurs turn their passions into a full-fledged business venture. The workshop will be held Thursday, October 19th at Springfield Regional Development Corporation office on Clinton Street in Springfield from 9 am to 1 pm.
Starting a business can be challenging. The workshop, conducted by an experienced business advisor, is designed as a guide for the first-time business owner. Participants receive a comprehensive start-up workbook, handouts and resources in marketing, financing, management and operations. By the end the workshop they will be well-informed about the tools and resources available to them and the ‘next steps involved in launching a successful business. The price of the workshop is $129 to attend and you can register online at www.vtsbdc.org under the training tab.
A few workshop highlights include how to:
• Use the “Business Model Canvas” to evaluate whether there is a viable business in their good idea
• Identify target customers and “unique selling proposition(s)”
• Register their business and apply for tax numbers
• Consider start-up costs, sales, expenses and financing options
• Pitch their idea and develop a business plan
• Plus much more!
Vermont Small Business Development Center is a non-profit partnership of government, education and business, organized to help Vermont small businesses succeed. No-cost, confidential advice is provided to existing business owners and new entrepreneurs throughout the state. The local VTSBDC office is located at Springfield Regional Development Corporation. For more information visit www.vtsbdc.org or contact Debra Boudrieau at (802) 885-2071 or dboudrieau@vtsbdc.org.

October 2, 2017

Tonka Trucks & Building Blocks

Filed under: SRDC — admin @ 5:48 am

(This column by SRDC Executive Director Bob Flint appears in the SRDC Fall Newsletter)

Even though my father and oldest brother were carpenters (Barry still is), I never really had much interest in playing with toy trucks or plastic hammers. Sure, I had them and enjoyed pushing them around the dogs and cats, but it never felt like my destiny.

I thought of that a couple of weeks ago when I was standing with Doug Gurney (and you know he surely had the best toy trucks!) behind J & L Plant 1. We were there to check out the work that the EPA Removals program was completing, removing the “grinding swarf” behind the building. It was pretty impressive – Doug figured it was 450 tons of material. Yet, both of us realized it was just another step (albeit a good sized one) in the seemingly never-ending journey of J & L. Yes, the equipment was a bit larger than the toys of yesteryear!

Across the street, we’re working to put the former Bryants building together, piece by piece. We hope to have space at both ends of the property available for cold storage for this winter (roof and interior work will be taking place in a bit) and we’re working to determine what stays/goes of the existing building.

In Windsor, SRDC is working with Distinctly Windsor/Windsor Improvement Corporation to assume operations of the former Goodyear property. SRDC will also have a regional Revolving Loan Fund to build upon the good work that CRDC has done for many years, assisting small businesses in Southern Windsor County.

Next door to the former Goodyear site is the Jarvis Street area of Windsor. Distinctly Windsor/Windsor Improvement Corporation is taking the bold step of “lifting” one of the small houses that has been in disrepair for many years. The elevation solves a flood zone issue, which has precluded this (and other homes in that area) from accessing the funding to put it back in shape. We have been providing oversight for this project which, along with Goodyear, are significant puzzle pieces for the revitalization of downtown Windsor.

We’re also involved with efforts in downtown Springfield, working with old friend Matt Dunne on a potentially exciting project centered around the former Park Street School. It’s early in the process, but we’re cautiously optimistic that we’ll have some interesting things to announce in the coming weeks and months. The project is built upon the remarkable gigabit (and more) connectivity we have because of the vision and investment that VTel has made in the region.

I still have my father’s yellow Connecticut Valley Construction hat kicking around. I’m not sure he ever entirely understood whatever it is I do at SRDC, but he knew it had something to do with “building”. In some ways, I guess, I’m swinging a metaphorical hammer each and every day!