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Small Business Center

two small business partners giving a high five
woman working in small business incubator space
young man working in small business center incubator space

Confidential Business Counseling

Small Business Centers provide local, experienced counselors as advisers for new and existing businesses. Available on an as-needed basis, this confidential service acts as a sounding board for new ideas and/or concerns you may have about your business. Our professional staff will help you find solutions to your challenging business questions. No question is too simple or complicated. There is no charge for this service.

CLICK HERE for a list of classes available in both English and Spanish. For services or questions in Spanish, please call Marilyn Graham at 910-755-8561.

Co-Working Space

Do you dream of starting your own business and find yourself at the kitchen table pulling your hair trying to figure out where to start? If you answered YES, you may need the assistance of the Small Business Center and membership with CINErG (Center for Innovative Networking & Entrepreneur Groups). This space will provide a physical location to independent workers, entrepreneurial start-ups, or virtual workers who desire a sense of community and synergy. In addition to meeting space, networking, and nurturing emerging businesses, here at Brunswick Community College’s Co-working Space you can get basic business necessities such as Wi-Fi access, printing, and copying, flexible space, support, etc.

To apply, simply complete the membership application and return to April Scott at scotta@brunswickcc.edu. Please indicate which membership package you prefer.

Once we review and approve your application someone from the Small Business Center will contact you. Please remember this space is for those that are interested in starting a business or are in the stages of establishing a business.

Business & Industry Incubator

Brunswick Community College’s Business and Industry Incubator is designed to accelerate the development of entrepreneurial occupants through an array of business support and resources. These services are intended to increase the survival rate of occupants business for the retention of employees and to enhance business expansion opportunities to grow the local economy.

The incubators can occupy three start-up manufacturing businesses. The team is always accepting applications and will notify you as soon as space is available.

Small Business Center’s April Scott on “Dive In”

Small Business Education Resources

Individual Business Counseling Sessions

Seminars and Workshops

Upcoming Webinars

Small Business Center Spotlights

Ocean Fired Studio Pottery

Holly Scott, the owner of Ocean Fired Studio Pottery, had created beautiful pottery for several years. In 2020 she decided it was time to share her work more broadly. She set out to learn how to start a business and market to the community.

“Small Business Center Director April Scott steered me in the right direction and was enormously helpful,” said Holly. “I wanted to learn what was most instrumental when starting Ocean Fired Studio Pottery before opening the doors to my new shop, not afterward. I got suggestions for an excellent web designer and other tips on promoting my business using Facebook and Instagram.”

Holly did the work and began selling at local markets and online. She has since expanded her business by opening a studio and shop at 4309 Mineola Ave. in Little River, SC. While you can still find Holly at several festivals and artisan markets, you can visit and make purchases at the shop, Tuesday-Friday, 10:00 AM-4:00 PM. You can also see her work on Facebook and Instagram.

Expand the Brand

Expand The Brand is a Business and Social Media Agency created with the client in mind. Working with start-up companies and managing social media for a Fortune 15 company for 8+ years Neiko Hannah, owner knew it was time to branch out and give his expertise to as many businesses as possible. Based in Leland, NC, Expand The Brand Launching in February 2022. 

The company’s goal is to help businesses grow by utilizing expertise and the expertise of established partners. Neiko states, “Our faith is at the core of what we do and we stand on.” When working with this agency you can assure you will have the highest quality of support and the highest return on your investment. They offer a variety of services to grow your business including social media strategy & management, web design and virtual assistance. They also offer other effective management tools to help grow and maintain your business. 

“At Expand The Brand, we strive to be the best and will serve you with the BEST!” said owner, Neiko Hannah. 

Want to learn more? Book A free consultation with them today by going to their website at https://www.theexpandthebrandagency.com/ and filling out the contact form.

You can visit their websiteFaceBook or Instagram to see more about Expand The Brand services.Ex

KCs precision auto

KC’s Precision Auto

KC’s Precision Auto has recently opened at 9600 Ploof Road in the new Ploof Road Business Park in Leland. The owner, Casey Northrup, has 30 years of experience as an ASE certified master technician. For 20 years, he owned and operated KC’s Performance Auto Care in East Montpelier, VT. After living in Brunswick County for 2 years, he decided it was time to set up an auto repair shop again.

Setting up a new business in a new state can be a challenge. Casey was looking for guidance and found the Small Business Center at Brunswick Community College. Casey stated, “Ms. Scott at the Small Business Center was a terrific resource, laying out the steps necessary to organize the business correctly with the IRS and the state of North Carolina and also providing great marketing ideas.”

KC’s Precision Auto is a full-service auto repair shop that can perform all aspects of auto repair including diagnostics, electrical repairs, oil changes, tune ups, timing belts, brake and suspension work, tire work and anything else that comes up. He has experience working with most makes and models but specializes in the imported brands such as Toyota, Lexus, Honda, Acura, Subaru, Kia, Hyundai, Mazda, BMW, VW, Audi, Mini Cooper and Mercedes.

Join Casey for his ribbon cutting on February 9th; 10:00am at his brand new location, 9600 Ploof Rd, Suite 1 Leland, NC.

You can make an appointment by calling or texting (910)408-1499, email kcsprecisionauto@yahoo.com, or messenger through Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100088194955488.

Tropical Smoothie Cafe logo

Tropical Smoothie Cafe

Tropical Smoothie Cafe, LLC, one of the fastest growing franchise concepts in the country, announced its newest franchised location is opening in Shallotte, NC on March 1,2023. The new location is owned and operated by Brandon & Deena Korman and marks their 4th Café to open in the area, with an additional 3 cafes slated to open in the next 2-3 years. Located at 123 Smith Avenue, the Shallotte cafe will be giving away Free Smoothies for a year to a random 50 guests who make a purchase the opening week. 

“Tropical Smoothie Cafe’s stellar growth would not be possible without dedicated and passionate franchisees like Brandon & Deena who continue to demonstrate confidence in our brand through the success of their cafes,” said Charles Watson, CEO of Tropical Smoothie Cafe, LLC. For more information about Tropical Smoothie Cafe, please visit www.tropicalsmoothiecafe.com

Interested in joining the Tropical Smoothie Cafe team? You can apply today by visiting https://tropicalsmoothiecafe.com/work-with-us/apply/ 

be sweet bakery logo

Be Sweet Bakery

When asked how Be Sweet Bakery, LLC came to be owner, Tria Brown shared how her love for baking started at an early age. She has been baking for 3 years professionally, but she has been whisking sugar ever since she was in the 5th grade. When Tria was younger she would stay up with her mom as she cooked and baked all night for the holidays. One of those evenings she handed her a box of cake mix and said “If you’re going to be in here you might as well help out! Besides, once you learn to follow a recipe you’ll be able to fix anything for the rest of your life.” From then on she was responsible for the desserts for all holidays. And as you can see I still am LOL!

Tria Brown stated, “Truly for me, it’s not just making dessert, it’s about creating a sweet experience. At Be Sweet Bakery I offer a range of standard cakes, cupcakes, pies, cookies, sweet breads, chocolate-covered treats, platters, and trays for family functions and office events. As well as custom confections for special occasions like weddings, birthdays, bridal or baby showers. “Actually, in my kitchen, every day is a great day for cake!”

Be Sweet Bakery is located in Leland, NC and operated out of a NC Food & Agriculture-certified in-home kitchen. You can see what sweet creations came out of her oven on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok & Pinterest using the handle @besweetbakes and while you’re there please like, follow and share! She promptly answer messages on Facebook & Instagram and can be reached at (910) 632-0155.

chocolate and s'more food truck and owner

Chocolate & S’more

Our latest Small Business Center Spotlight is Chocolate and S’more! It has been a dream of owner, Sheila Hall since college at East Carolina University and first came to mind when she started pairing sweet and savory ingredients together to make a s’more.

While technically not a coffee business, coffee drinks are on the menu along with other gourmet sips including teas, Italian sodas, lemonades and the most popular frozen hot chocolates. The menu can pivot with hot or cold sips depending on the temperatures and since they stock over 40 sauces and syrups, sips can always be blended per the customer’s choice or a customer can try the weekly feature. Coffees are roasted in NC by 321 Coffee, a Raleigh based business that employees people with developmental disabilities. Teas are blended in NC, frozen drinks are made with a proprietary blend that is manufactured here in NC, and a 3rd generation company out of NC produces our paper products. When someone supports Chocolate and S’more, they are also supporting four other NC businesses and that list continues to grow.

Gourmet s’mores are new to the menu, pairing sweet and savory ingredients together in a real sandwiched s’more. Customers can expect that menu to change seasonally, depending on fruits that are in season.

To learn more, follow Chocolate and S’more on Instagram or Facebook @Chocolateandsmore. Contact Sheila today to schedule an event at chocolateandsmore@gmail.com or (910) 444-8305. You can also visit BCC’s main campus next Monday and Friday from 9 AM-1 PM. They are a huge hit among students and staff!

small business center entrepreneur

Swell Home

Another Small Business Center success story! Thanks to the guidance and support she received from Brunswick Community College’s Small Business Center, Jessica Pickett (pictured) will spend August 5, 2022, opening Swell-Home, a Hunter Douglas Gallery servicing residential and commercial clients. Her showroom will feature fresh concepts in window treatments and interior design, perfect for Coastal Carolina.

“Working with the Small Business Center has been paramount to preparing me for opening and running a small business,” said Pickett. “The classes offered on all aspects of business, from putting together a Business Plan to Taxes have helped me prepare for my new business Swell-Home. The hands on business advice and business plan review helped me understand if I was on the right track and where I might need to do some work. Their advice helped me avoid missteps and made me focus on what I needed to do next.”

BCC’s Small Business Center provide local, experienced counselors as advisers for new and existing businesses. Available on an as-needed basis, this confidential service acts as a sounding board for ideas or concerns you may have about your business. At no charge, our professional staff will help you find solutions to your business questions. We also offer Co-Working space and Business and Industry Incubator opportunities.

You can find the new Swell-Home showroom at 497 Olde Waterford Way, Suite 105, Belville, NC, and can reach Pickett at 910-769-4980 or www.swell-home.com.

Port City Plates

Rob & Shelly Marketell grew up in Western NY-Rochester and always dreamed of living down south. After 30+ years in corporate and non-profit roles and having two grown children, they made the move a year ago to Leland, NC. “Working with April Scott and the Small Business Center was instrumental in helping us navigate the challenges of starting our our own business through providing guidance, knowledge and support as we moved through the process. Thank you April and SBC for helping us bring our dream into reality!”

The “Plate” as it’s known, started decades ago as a meal to cure an impending hangover. It quickly became the famous meal of Western New York.

What Is a Trash Plate? A traditional Plate comes with 2 cheeseburgers or 2 Zweigles hot dogs (Rochester’s famous all beef Red Hot or Pork White hot) and two generous helpings of homemade home fries and macaroni salad. It’s topped off with mustard, chopped onion, and smothered in a homemade meat hot sauce. It’s the meat hot sauce that ties it all together! Other proteins are available like chicken tenders or grilled chicken. Baked beans, tater tots and French fries are also available as sides.

There are 4 different ways to have it:

The Trash Plate – everything piled high on a plate
The Trash Can – an easy hand-held deli container full of all the ingredients of a plate
The Trash Wrap – everything in a tortilla
The Trash Burger – all the sides and toppings piled high on a traditional burger and bun

Rob & Shelly can’t wait to meet and serve everyone! When you come up to the window, make sure to say “Hi” and “I’ll take a Plate.” You can find Port City Plates at Brunswick Community College main campus, Nov 9, Dec 7th & 14th and follow them on Facebook and Instagram for other locations.

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