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Local business receives Success Award at annual SBDC ceremony

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Local business receives Success Award at annual SBDC ceremony

By Lina Justine Kelly

Thatcher, AZ— Last month, local business owner Wendy Skinner, from Caboose Frozen Treats, in Thatcher, was honored for her small business success on the House Lawn of the Arizona State Capitol as nearly 400 legislators, host administrators, clients, partners, and other stakeholders joined the Arizona Small Business Development Center Network (AZSBDC) at the 2013 Success Awards ceremony. The owners of the 14 winning companies were the stars of the event.

Skinner started Caboose Frozen Treats in 2011 when she saw the need for a frozen yogurt shop in town. Caboose Frozen Treats was the first frozen yogurt shop to offer gluten-free, sugar-free, and dairy-free options when it opened. “There truly isn’t anything like Caboose Frozen Treats in the Gila Valley with its custom-designed caboose-style building,” said Kevin Peck, EAC’s SBDC Director.

Skinner started receiving help from the SBDC in August of 2011 when she was in search of marketing assistance to sustain the initial grand opening excitement. “The SBDC showed us the potential of social media tools like Facebook, Yelp, FourSquare, and Twitter,” says Skinner. The Skinners now have a social media strategy that has increased their visibility in the market, have a strong Facebook following, and are currently developing a website. “The SBDC really helped us a lot,” Skinner noted. “We go to them all the time now for advice and I wish that I had found them sooner.”

The AZSBDC Network is Arizona’s largest and most accessible source of assistance for small business, with 26 locations across Arizona that provide free one-on-one business counseling and other programs. The Network became a fully accredited member of the Association of Small Business Development Centers, a prestigious status, for having exceptional growth and passionate, talented teams.

During 2012, the Network counseled 3,177 clients and helped create or retain 1,471 jobs. AZSBDC clients started 352 new businesses last year and created capital investment totaling around $38 million. Together, these companies increased their sales by about $45 million.

“Congratulations to each of our winners this year who, out of more than 3000 small businesses who sought assistance from the AZSBDC Network during 2012, represent the best of the best,” said Peck.

For more information about EAC’s SBDC, contact Peck at (928) 428-8590 or by email at: