ChipHeadz Computer Solutions

Many people are in need of computer support and maintenance. The rapid pace of technological change often leaves the average consumer unable to resolve software and hardware problems. Dale Satterfield and Anthony Coons saw this consumer need in their community and the apparent lack of local computer repair/maintanence services to meet it. They believed there was a business opportunity to be exploited.

ChipHeadz Computer Solutions, a Comp TIA certified operation, has had a great start since opening its doors in August 2010. It began when Dale and his business partner Anthony decided to explore entering the computer repair and maintenance industry. Dale was very knowledgeable about computers, but realized he was less knowledgeable about starting and running a business. he sought assistance from the Shippensburg University Small Business Development Center (SBDC).

SBDC business consultant Cheryl Young started out by helping Dale with market research on the Shippensburg and Chambersburg area to determine how many households had computers and what services were available locally. Looking at the potential consumer demand and the current computer service businesses in the area, she helped Dale identify potential market opportunities and pointed him in a direction that he believed would help him grow the business quickly.

Even with ChipHeadz' apparent opportunity in the marketplace, Dale and Anthony faced start-up challenges. Their main obstacle initially was funding to start the business. Banks told them that they would have to be in business for at least two years before receiving any loans. Cheryl and Dale understand the basics of business success. With careful financial planning and conservative management, Dale determined they could start the business without external funding.

The second big challenge they encountered was finding the right business location. They leased a building in July of 2010. After opening their doors in August, they quickly found the growing business would need more space to meet their customers' needs. They have now leased a different building with three times their original space that also provides more visibility. This bigger office space will also allow them to pursue other ideas that were not possible in their original space.

Dale believes the SBDC's services are certainly invaluable and important for any entrepreneur who is facing business challenges. The financial tools and advice he received really helped his business start off on the right track. the information, guidance, and new business contacts provided by the SBDC have lifted a lot of weight off his shoulders, giving him the opportunity to focus on other things that need to be done. He now recommends the services of the SBDC to others and believes they "are a tremendous help in any business situation."

ChipHeadz Computer Solutions will be expanding to the Chambersburg area market. They are in the process of leasing approximately 2,000 square feet of space on the square of Chambersburg and hope to open their doors in the July-August 2011 time frame.