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Success Stories

Barren Hill Tavern

With the help of Temple SBDC, local entrepreneur Erin Wallace was able to secure a loan that allowed her to open her third gastro pub in Philadelphia. Now, Barren Hill Tavern & Brewery is a thriving full-service restaurant that serves craft and imported beers (with 30 draft lines). Since their opening in November 2013, they have received over 1700 likes on Facebook and rave reviews.

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Cornerstone Legal Group

Wesley David Cornish is a Philadelphia native and attended Temple University Beasley School of Law. Since joining the Temple Incubator program his law practice has substantially grown.  Cornerstone has benefited greatly from the SBDC’s individualized consulting, and especially from the ongoing training that the Incubator program provides to all its participants.

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Perfect Choice Cleaning

Perfect Choice Cleaning provides residential cleaning services to homes mainly in the center city area of Philadelphia. Amber Cureton moved the home-based business to the Temple SBDC Incubator program in 2015. The Incubator has given Amber access to training, consulting, and interns. With the assistance of the Incubator support services, Amber Cureton was able to more than double her sales in 2015.

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Sherrill Mosee solved a problem for young moms everywhere. With her engineering background, Mosee designed the chic MinkeeBlue all-purpose bag, an original prototype that features a 2-in-1 handbag and adjustable compartment system to eliminate the hassle of carrying a purse, diaper bag, lunch bag, gym bag, etc. The Temple SBDC assisted Mrs. Mosee in completing her business plan by providing valuable research on her competition and potential customers. The bag was recently featured on Katie Couric’s show that focused on mothers with inventions, and Mosee has been receiving glowing reviews.

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Kayuh Bicycles & Cafe

Izzat Rahman had a passion for eco-friendly bike riding and healthy eating. He had a vision for a place where bikers could go for accessories and repairs, and also stop in for a bite to eat on their journey through the city. Rahman turned to the Temple SBDC for help, and they assisted him with his business plan.  In 2015, Izzat was able to open the first bike cafe in Philadelphia.

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Wild Mantle

Avi Loren Fox has combined two of her passions—fashion and saving the planet—into a successful small business. “Wild Mantle” makes homemade hooded scarves from sustainable materials. The SBDC assisted Fox with market research, the business plan and developing financial projections which helped her get financing for her business. Since then, Wild Mantle’s scarves have been featured on FOX29 News Philadelphia, in the Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia Magazine, Philly Voice, and Philly Weekly, among others.

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Ferrarini Electric

Jordan Parisse’s journey with the SBDC began when he completed the Construction Management Certificate Series in 2012. Soon after, he took the Entrepreneurial Success Workshop Series to improve his family business, Ferrarini Kitchen and Bath. In 2014, Parisse ventured into an offshoot electrical contracting business, Ferrarini Electric, LLC. Parisse’s progress has been impressive so far—some of his most  recent customers include Rita’s Water Ice, Nathan’s Hot Dogs, and Subway Restaurant.

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SBDC In the News

Power Moves: Nerd Street Gamers CEO John Fazio made Newsweek’s top disruptors list

Originally posted by on 1/3/22

"The Temple SBDC was interested in hosting an energy incubator to add to our services for small, energy focused businesses like ATP-PA and Metal Light," said Maura Shenker, director of Temple’s SBDC, in a statement. "We’re excited to see what the future holds for these outstanding energy entrepreneurs and the impact their solutions will have on making Philadelphia a cleaner, greener city."

Wolf Administration Working with Amazon Web Services to Help Small Retailers

Originally posted by MyChesCo on 12/2/21

Additionally, DCED provided $300,000 to support the Temple University SBDC’s Pennsylvania Digital Transformation and eCommerce Program (PADTEP) initiative, which will enhance e-commerce opportunities for small businesses in all 67 Pennsylvania counties.

PA SBDC: Shop Small, Shop Local on Small Business Saturday

Originally posted by on 11/24/21

The organization will also offer virtual support, with promotions like the shop small, shop local gift guide curated by the Small Business Development Center at Temple University. The collection spotlights 30 Philadelphia-area businesses offering gifts for the home decorator, for the artsy and eclectic, for the little ones, for the skin-care obsessed, for the coffee connoisseur, for the party people, for the amateur distiller and much more.

Temple’s Small Business Development Center can help your biz cross the digital divide

Originally posted by on 10/8/21

Temple University Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Director Maura Shenker wants to help small business owners make strides in the digital space.

The new PA Digital Transformation eCommerce Program (PADTEP) will build on the work SBDC has been doing during the pandemic to assist these entrepreneurs in pivoting to meet their customers’ needs. In 2020, the center received CARES Act funding from the U.S. Small Business Administration to help local small business owners get their businesses online.

Gov. Wolf Highlights Support of Small Businesses During COVID-19 at PA SBDC Conference

Originally posted by Governor Tom Wolf webpage on 4/13/21

Governor Tom Wolf applauded the efforts of the Pennsylvania SBDC Network who served more than 13,000 clients and supported about 80,000 jobs across the state over the last year. “Small businesses are a crucial part of our economy. The Pennsylvania Small Business Development Centers are an essential resource for small businesses and I’m grateful for all of their hard work to help entrepreneurs” Gov. Wolf said.

Yelp is a great tool for small businesses as the economy recovers but it has dangers, too

Originally Posted by the Philadelphia Inquirer, by Gene Marks, March 30, 2021

But let’s not forget that Yelp is, at its core, a review site. So appropriately handling reviews — whether good or bad — is more important than ever.

Sarah Mailloux of Temple SBDC recommends that if you are receiving positive feedback, you should send a private message to thank the poster. For negative reviews, she recommends responding publicly on your page so that other consumers can see how you addressed their concern.

A guide to picking the right co-working space

Originally published by Laura Daily for the Washington Post, Jan. 14, 2020

“Co-working appeals to both ­solopreneurs and start-ups, says ­Jamie Shanker-Passero, associate director of the Temple University Small Business Development Center in Philadelphia. “With rising real estate prices, space sharing is crucial. You don’t pay for unused space, but do share expenses such as utilities, security and front desk personnel,” she says.

Black-owned firms make up larger share of Philadelphia’s businesses than previously reported

Originally published by the Philadelphia Tribune, July 25, 2019

The top challenges facing African-American business owners include access to capital and scaling up a business, said Cherrill Wilson, senior associate director at Temple University’s Small Business Development Center, which provided consulting and educational program assistance to more than 1,000 businesses last year.

3 resources to help vetrepreneurs start their own businesses in Greater Philadelphia

Originally posted by Hector Dávila Jr. for Technically Philly, November 11, 2019

Temple University’s Small Business Development Center (SBDC) and veteran entrepreneurship-focused nonprofit Warrior Rising teamed up to launch a new incubator, the Small Business Special Forces Incubator, for veterans at Temple’s SBDC outpost on its Ambler campus.

Small Business Development Center: Helping Businesses Grow, Thrive and Survive

Originally posted by Temple News, by James Duffy, October 2019

“Our mission is to help small businesses grow, thrive and survive. We help them build their business from the ground up,” said Kraus, who is also a technology and manufacturing specialist. “The Temple Ambler SBDC predominantly serves the suburbs, the surrounding Philadelphia communities — a convenient location to ‘get in, get help, and get out,’ because time is a precious commodity for any new business. It’s a big benefit to be located right within the neighborhood.”

SBDC Client BuildLab Recipient of StartupPHL Venture Grant

Originally published by the Department of Commerce, July 25, 2019

The Philadelphia Department of Commerce and its StartupPHL initiative announced the recipients of the StartupPHL Venture Program, which aims to support startup companies run by entrepreneurs from socially or economically disadvantaged backgrounds. The StartupPHL Venture Program provides funding for technology or technology-enabled ventures that may not have access to traditional forms of capital and founder networks.

New Temple University program looks to help vets with big ideas

Originally posted by Kim Glovas for KYW

AMBLER, Pa. (KYW Newsradio) — A new center opening up at the Temple University Ambler campus is looking to provide business training for new companies, and it’s free for veterans.

It’s called the Outreach Center, and it is an incubator for new businesses created by veterans.

Maura Shenker, director of the Small Business Development Center, says one of the problems for veterans is a lack of a good credit history.

“A lot of ways that civilians build credit: buying a car, buying a house, paying their cable bill on time, paying power companies on time, you know building a credit history, people in the military just don’t have those opportunities,” she said.

Shenker says the center will give trainees not only office space, including computers, printers and Wi-Fi, but also alternatives to traditional bank loans.

“Such as CDFI’s, and that stands for Community Development Financial Institutions,” she said. “They’re basically nonprofit banks that can do what’s called a character loan, meaning instead of just looking at your credit score, they look at your whole personal history.”

Applications will be accepted from now through the end of May.

Originally posted by Kim Glovas for KYW (original post is no longer available)

Local entrepreneur gets a boost from Small Business Development Center

Originally posted by Temple News, April 8, 2019

Trina Worrell Benjamin, CEO of TWB Cleaning Contractors, is building her business with the help Temple’s Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Incubator Program, which supports start-up and existing ventures in the Philadelphia area through consulting, training, and affordable office space.

Small Business Development Center opening at Temple Ambler

Originally posted by Temple News, by James Duffy

Temple University is giving entrepreneurs—military veterans in particular—a new place and an essential partner to help their business concepts become reality. On March 20 at 3 p.m., Temple’s Small Business Development Center (SBDC) will cut the ribbon on a new office located in the Ambler Campus Library Building.

Cooperative Agreement

The Temple SBDC is partially funded by a grant from the Department of Community & Economic Development and by the U.S. Small Business Administration under Cooperative Agreement No. 4-603001-Z-0040-24. The support given by the U.S. Small Business Administration through such funding does not constitute an express or implied endorsement of any of the cosponsor(s)’ or participants’ opinions, findings, conclusions, recommendations, products, or services.

Funding Partners

Funding support and resources are provided by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania through the Department of Community & Economic Development; through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration; and in part through support from Temple University.  All services are extended to the public on a non-discriminatory basis. Special arrangements for persons with disabilities can be made by calling 215-204-7282.  All opinions, conclusions or recommendations expressed are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the SBA. SBDC services are not available to individuals or entities that have been debarred or suspended by the federal government.  By agreeing to receive assistance from the SBDC you are self-certifying that you are not currently federally debarred or suspended and also agree to cease using SBDC services if you become federally debarred or suspended in the future.

All SBDC programs are non-discriminatory and open to the public. Reasonable arrangements for persons with disabilities will be made if requested, at least two weeks in advance. Contact the Temple SBDC at 1515 Market Street, Suite 525, Philadelphia, PA 19102, 215-204-7282, email address:

The Temple University SBDC is a member of the network of Pennsylvania Small Business Development Centers and the National Association of Small Business Development Centers.