now that October is National Women's Small Business month? And did you also know that, according to the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO), over 9.1 million businesses are owned by women, generating $1.4 billion in sales as of 2014? For over 35 years, GROW South Dakota has been working hard to assist women starting their own businesses. Here's just one story of how we've helped turn dreams into reality:
Anyone who has remodeled or built a house knows the routine: visit with the plumber, swing by the lighting store, touch base with another store on flooring, and double check the list to ensure no stops were missed along the way. In Aberdeen, SD that is not the case anymore. Four years ago DeAnn Reif opened Ultimate Kitchen and Bath (UK&B). The idea for UK&B evolved as she found herself repeatedly saying, “Gee, wouldn’t it be nice not to have to run all over Aberdeen to remodel a room in your house?”
For Reif, starting the business did not happen as quickly as the idea was generated. Reif admits that she had a lot of reservations. At her husband’s encouragement, she partnered with a local plumber to set up a showroom. She contacted suppliers for cabinets, flooring and other necessary materials and found that everyone was eager to assist her by contributing samples she could begin to design with and sell by.
After a couple months, DeAnn realized she wanted to buy out the plumber’s share of her showroom displays and spread her wings alone. With a business loan from GROW South Dakota, she was able to officially finance her dream, UK&B. Soon after that initial loan and steady growth of her business, she again with the help of financing from GROW South Dakota, moved into a new location with a larger showroom and better visibility to the public. She had dreamed of the business for quite some time, and by having faith in herself and her idea she was able to work with GROW South Dakota to make business ownership a reality.
More than four years along, and two full-time employees later, the business continues to grow each day. Her dream has become a reality. Ultimate Kitchen & Bath serves the greater Aberdeen area. More information can be found at www.ukbaberdeen.com or (605) 725-6864.
GROW South Dakota is a non-profit small business lender that serves both new and growing businesses throughout South Dakota. Call (605) 698-7654 for more information. GROW South Dakota is an equal opportunity lender.
Pictured left to right are UK&B Design Consultants Brittany Tolvstad, Jillian Janusz and owner DeAnn Reif.