With a family and employment history in the mattress manufacturing industry, Juan Rodriguez looked to find an organization that could help him with starting his own mattress repairing, manufacturing, and refurbishing business. Luckily, he found the Oklahoma SBDC, registered for advising, and was assigned to business advisor Susan Urbach.  

With over 30 years of advising experience, Urbach has worked with numerous mattress manufacturers in the past, so her knowledge was incredibly beneficial for Juan’s business development. She was impressed by how Rodriguez had already bought and established his own shop with cost-efficient methods and equipment. She took the time to help him get the necessities for his business squared-away. After assisting with the business set-up, logo, website, accounting systems, sample sales, service contracts and invoices, Susan worked with Juan to identify customer targets in retail, wholesale, and commercial markets. 

“I can’t imagine trying to start this business without the help of the Oklahoma Small Business Development Center and meeting with Susan Urbach,” says Rodriguez. “I knew there was a lot to learn, but she made things understandable, and was so patient. I have been trying to keep all my startup costs as low as possible, and she helped me find all sorts of other resources that were reasonable, and many were even free.” 

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No matter the size or stage of your business, the Oklahoma Small Business Development Center has the knowledge, tools and resources to help your Oklahoma business start, grow and succeed. We provide no-cost, confidential consulting to help Oklahoma’s businesses start, sustain, or expand.

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Nelson Allen, a Tulsa resident for over 44 years with a strong business background, had a passion for starting his own storage facility company and doing what he could to support his community of North Tulsa. He had been planning the start of his business for over five years, going to conventions, and talking to different storage facility owners to learn as much as he could.  

Eventually, Nelson reached out to the Oklahoma SBDC and was assigned business advisor Jessee Paxton. In partnership with the Greenwood Women’s Business Center, Jessee helped fill in the gaps so Nelson could reach his business goals. Although Nelson already knew most things on how to start a business, he worked with the Oklahoma SBDC to make sure that he had everything planned out and every box checked before he opened his doors. Gilcrease Express Storage was able to open in late 2022 with a climate-controlled, state-of-the-art facility with 24-hour security monitoring video surveillance. 

“Jessee and the SBDC helped teach me what to do and what not to do,” said business owner Nelson Allen. “With the trainings and one-on-one counseling, [they helped provide] me business skills in planning, marketing, and HR… I will continue to use the SBDC and the Greenwood Women’s Business Center to help accomplish my future business goals which is adding more businesses around the storage facility that will build the community and help with more business opportunities for entrepreneurs.” 

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No matter the size or stage of your business, the Oklahoma Small Business Development Center has the knowledge, tools and resources to help your Oklahoma business start, grow and succeed. We provide no-cost, confidential consulting to help Oklahoma’s businesses start, sustain, or expand.

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With a goal to create a healthy snack bar, Jeff Ragan founded KiZE Concepts, a business that produces healthy nutrition bars in a variety of flavors. While preparing for the required certifications, the company heard about the Oklahoma SBDC and reached out for assistance with the Safe Quality Food (SQF) audit. Despite the set-back made by the COVID-19 pandemic, they were able to pass the audit in October of 2020, thanks in large part to the help of business advisor Stephanie Baker, who met with the KiZE team regularly to review the necessary code requirements.  

KiZE continued to improve their food safety and quality programs while working with the Oklahoma SBDC. Because of this, they were able to pass both the 2021 and the 2022 SQF audits, allowing their company to expand their sales. 

“Really incredible service from Stephanie Baker,” says Jeff Ragan, CEO of KiZE. “We have no prior industry experience and going for a high-level, difficult audit like SQF would not have been possible without her support. Not only did we pass, we received an excellent score – 11 points higher than when we did the first time. Stephanie was a huge part in helping prepare and improve our operation and understanding the SQF system…” 

“… We are extremely grateful to have the support from the Oklahoma SBDC and know that the investment in us will continue to pay dividends in improving our business, the lives of our people, and our community.” 

Need help with your business?

No matter the size or stage of your business, the Oklahoma Small Business Development Center has the knowledge, tools and resources to help your Oklahoma business start, grow and succeed. We provide no-cost, confidential consulting to help Oklahoma’s businesses start, sustain, or expand.

Want to be one of our success stories? Click the button below to get started!

Request Advising