Cessna Motor Sports

The success stories below represent a small fraction of the clients we work with. We have, however, tried to present a representative sample across a broad range of business types.

"Small Businesses, Big Results"

By Randy Wells, IUP Magazine, Summer 2012 issue.
This article highlights four local businesses who received assistance from the IUP SBDC: Cherryhill Manufacturing, Plant-It Earth, Environmental Service Laboratories, and Lingrow Farm. Read about their successes and future plans.

Manufacturing/Construction/Mining Businesses

Arcadia Industrial Corporation

Founded with the help of the SBDC in 1999, the company has returned to the SBDC for assistance twice; once when ownership transitioned to a new ownership group and a second time for expansion. Each time, the SBDC delivered a business plan that helped provide a foundation for funding and growth.

Cessna Motorsports

Necessity and passion also led to the development of Cessna Motorsports, which builds out racing chassis for dirt tracks, sells racing after-market parts, and services race cars.

Cherryhill Manufacturing

The founders developed a breakthrough concept for floor sanding. The SBDC helped them through the prototype development and refinement process and then through the initial commercialization of the product. The company has added a number of product lines and built a headquarters building.

Petra Drilling

With years of experience working with and selling supplies to the operators of stone quarry and coal mining business, Casey Heckman was familiar with the operating costs and the opportunities available in these industries. One opportunity he wanted to pursue was in providing drilling services to the operators of stone quarries and surface coal mines. The SBDC helped Casey transform his knowledge of the operating costs into credible pro-formas into balance sheets, income statements, and cash flows.

Twin Pines Manufacturing

When Bob Kovalcik moved his small manufacturing operation to Indiana County, the IUP SBDC helped him obtain financing for the move by working with him to develop a business plan. His business seemed to expand and contract with the economy. As the shale gas industry began to expand into Pennsylvania, Bob searched for ways to diversify his product base and was able to identify some potential opportunities.

Service Businesses


Dino Caporossi wanted to assess the advisability of purchasing an operating Aamco franchise. The SBDC helped him review the historical financials, research the industry, develop a business plan, discuss various financing options, etc., so he could make an informed decision.

Deuce Transport

The announcement of the extent of the natural gas reserves in the Marcellus Shales cause Daron Murton to identify an opportunity to establish a business serving the industry. The SBDC helped Daron package his ideas for presentation to lenders and to do financial projections showing the viability of the idea.

Keystone Fundraising Solutions

Everyone knows of a nonprofit organization in search of funding. When Heidi Malin returned to live in her hometown after fifteen years, she realized there was a need in Indiana County for her fundraising experience. Heidi and the SBDC staff spent time brainstorming taglines, marketing strategies, and developing a business plan.

Lingrow Farm

When Linda Alworth wanted to turn her farm into a venue for weddings and corporate events and an all-occasion meeting facility, the SBDC helped her to develop a financing proposal for the bank.

Pleasant Valley Golf Course

When Zoltan Connor returned to western Pennsylvania, he was dismayed to see the condition of the golf course on which his United High School golf team had played. Yet, he saw a great opportunity. Featuring great views of the Laurel Highlands from every hole, the course is a hidden gem. In Zoltan's words, "Pleasant Valley is a sleeping giant.

Salon Taboo

Jessica Jujak had a vision and a dream to own her own ultimate dream salon. Her desire was to provide the services and quality of a top-level hair priced salon at affordable prices in a comfortable, welcoming atmosphere. The IUP SBDC helped Jessica review and revise her concept and guided her through conducting market research and forecasting her revenues and costs.

Sunflower Yoga Studio

When Jill Wingerter proposed establishing a yoga studio in 2007 in Indiana,Pennsylvania, many doubted its viability. Fast forward to 2018 and there are others who have followed her lead as yoga gained in popularity. Jill, like other entrepreneurs, took a chance and helped give birth to the future.

Retail/Wholesale Businesses

Arlington Mower

James Fichtner wanted to purchase an existing mower repair business and build its sales based upon his experience in sales and with hydraulic repair. The SBDC helped him through the acquisition process by identifying the information he would need from the seller to develop a plan acceptable to the bank and to refine his projections based upon that information.

Conny Creek Brewing Company

Lee Layton pursued his passion for brewing beer and has created an oasis for beer lovers outside of New Kensington, Pennsylvania. Conny Creek Brewing Company has not only become a favorite of beer lovers, but has also developed a reputation for quality food and a friendly atmosphere.

Disobedient Spirits

When Pennsylvania legalized micro distilleries, the principals began thinking about applying for a license and began the journey to create a micro distillery. In what proved to be the shortest part of the journey, the SBDC assisted them in writing their initial business plan through which they were able to raise the funds they needed.

LA Taco

Walter Aguirre, a student at IUP with an entrepreneurial bent, was seeking a way to provide additional income for his family. He approached the IUP SBDC with several ideas for starting a business. The SBDC helped Aguirre research his ideas and decide on the path he would take. Walter felt there was a gap in the market when it came to Hispanic foods. He decided this was an excellent time to launch a business providing food services based on Latin cuisines.

Levity Brewing Company

Three friends regularly came together to brew beer and soon brewing went from occasional to regular get-togethers between them and their families. After several years, they felt they were in a position to all leave their jobs and start a brewery/brew pub. They began working with the SBDC to make their goal a reality. That reality has become a significant contribution to the "quality of life" in Indiana, Pennsylvania.

Plant-it Earth

Karin Eller had a vision and a dream. She wished to build a business focused on her interests in gardening and on growing heirloom tomatoes and peppers. Not only was the concept a new and unfamiliar one with most potential customers, but her family's land was miles away from the most travelled roads. The SBDC helped Karin realize her vision.

The Commonplace Coffeehouse and Roastery

What do you do when you decide to not pursue the usual career path for your field of study? T.J. Fairchild faced that question after obtaining a master's degree in philosophy and his wife had obtained a degree in social work. Both had experience working in coffee shops to support themselves through school. They learned as much as they could about coffee and launched their coffee. When they were ready to expand, the consulted with the SBDC and Small Business Institute for marketing research, product development, and cost analysis.

Villa Pub and Grill

Business plan assistance helped the new owners obtain bank financing to refurbish a bar and restaurant near the Chestnut Ridge Golf Course and downtown Blairsville. The reenergized facility has helped create another option for golf course visitors and area residents.