Fat Cat Vapor Shop

    • ss lock haven fat cat vapor
Chris Hughes has opened a retail business specializing in selling electronic
cigarettes (e-cig) and accessories named Fat Cat Vapor Shop, operating in
Lycoming County. They are marketing their business to users and
potential users of electronic cigarettes in central Pennsylvania.
Hughes is an e-cig user that transitioned from traditional cigarette smoking.
He feels that it has been a positive change for him and wants to provide
this opportunity to others. He opened Fat Cat Vapor Shop in December
2013 to provide people with what he feels is a better alternative to
cigarettes and other tobacco products. Located in Williamsport, the
business sells electronic cigarettes, a product which has become a fastgrowing
industry. Hughes, 48, a former cellphone technician and car wash
manager, had never been in business for himself, but he liked the idea of
one dealing with e-cigs. "I talked to other people in the industry," he said.
"I did a lot of research on it."
E-cigs come in a variety of shapes and sizes and operate on a battery. They
produce a vapor when air moves across a heated coil that comes in contact
with e-liquid, the flavored base that contains nicotine. He is quick to
note that nicotine is a stimulant and conceded that not smoking at all is the
healthiest option. He sells various e-cig accessories. The shop also
includes a lounge area and customers can sample products at the shop's
tester station. "We wanted to make it warm and welcoming," said Hughes'
wife, Tina Swisher. "This is a very community-based kind of business."
Hughes approached the Lock Haven University Small Business Development Center (SBDC) for assistance with developing a business plan
and financial projections as well as completing registrations and licensing
to get the retail business started. By providing assistance with the
development of an effective business plan as well as information on
registrations needed for business start-up, He was able to start his retail
business. The well designed business plan enabled him to successfully
secure a commercial loan from M&T Bank, to cover all of his start-up
needs. The business opened just before the holidays in December 2013.
He is currently the only employee of the business, although he plans to
hire one part time employee to help him handle all of the day-to-day operations as the business grows.