Burke's Mountain View Printing

Peter Burke originally approached the Wilkes University Small Business Development Center (SBDC) in 2007 for assistance in purchasing his employer’s commercial printing business.  With the Wilkes University SBDC’s help, Burke was successful in developing a business plan and securing financing for the purchase, and was soon operating his own business.

When the economy collapsed in 2008, Burke, like many business owners, found himself fighting to keep sales volume up and the business alive.  He fought a strong battle for several years, but in 2012, even with the economy recovering, Burke found himself in a situation where cash flows were stressed and sales were not climbing back to where they once were.  The company was in trouble.

Burke again approached the Wilkes University SBDC seeking assistance to get the business back to where it once was. After discussing the overall situation, Burke and the SBDC came up with a two-step plan. The first step was to develop a plan and proposal to secure financing to consolidate existing debt and lower monthly payments. The opportunity to accomplish this goal did exist through MetroAction’s new Luzerne County Loan Funds. MetroAction is an area SBA micro-lender based out of the Scranton Chamber of Commerce. The second step was to redevelop a strong marketing campaign to re-connect with old customers and attract new ones from a targeted market base including new business starts and area restaurants (menu and brochure driven service providers).

Once again with the SBDC assistance, through business and marketing plan development along with research provided to support sales estimates, Burke was able to secure the $60,000 needed to consolidate debt and improve overall cash flows.  He also reported that customers immediately responded to the marketing avenues developed.  Old customers who did not use his service for some time were again sending work to his printing business and with the research help of the SBDC, he has begun reaching the markets targeted by the effort.

Like many successful business owners, Burke understands now that he needs to stay in touch with customers and dedicate time to market his services to keep sales at a healthy level.  He feels that he has the right tools in place to keep the company healthy and growing.  Burke also plans to stay in touch with the Wilkes SBDC for industry research and information in an attempt to keep abreast of new developments and services offered by businesses in the industry.