Revolving Loan Supports Small Business Growth
Thursday, January 11, 2018
Small businesses help rural economies grow. A recent analysis of farming and ranching communities in Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Nebraska and the Dakotas found that almost 60 percent of job growth in the 1990s was the direct result of entrepreneurs starting small, non-farm businesses.
It’s all about finding the right entrepreneurial idea or niche. Amy Tubbs took over a floral shop in Centerville nearly 8 years ago and has been building it ever since. Flower-Tique started with flower arrangements and plants. Tubbs has gradually added unique gift items to the shop, such as decorative pots, candles, wall hangings and picture frames.
With Tubbs’ careful curation, the business has been growing. In July of 2016, she went from renting to purchasing a building. She also expanded her business in 2017 to include a bake shop. “Baked goods, go well with flowers and gifts,” she says. “I decided to do bakery because cake decorating has been something I’ve been interested in but never had time to do. I always told myself that after my kids were grown and graduated I wanted to do that.”
When a woman in town was selling her small bakery business, Tubbs decided to act. She bought the business and trained in with Laura Brown, the previous owner. She’s been watching YouTube instructional videos to figure out how to make various items too.
The Covered in Flour Bake Shop offers freshly baked treats like cinnamon rolls, cupcakes and cookies each day. Tubbs mainly does special orders. She made pies for Thanksgiving, for example, and regularly does cream cheese mints for baby showers. She creates cakes and cupcakes for occasions like weddings and birthdays.
An Appanoose Economic Development Corporation revolving loan helped Tubbs purchase equipment for the Covered in Flour Bake Shop. She says she’s grateful for this local support for small businesses. “It really helped me with some of the extra expenses. It was easy to apply and qualify for,” she says.
Tubbs points out that investing in small businesses helps the town grow. She’s noticed as the diversity of shops and offerings increase, new visitors seem to come in.
There’s also a sense of camaraderie among area business owners that helps everyone do better, according to Tubbs. “We help each other out. If I don’t have something someone’s looking for, I’ll send them down the street to someone else’s shop, even if happens to be competitor.”