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dance2b

Jennifer Tisdale learned early in her years as a consultant that creativity and business opportunity are imperative for a successful startup. Looking for a dance studio to express her own creative outlet, she explored the Denver region to see what dance studios existed and what they offered. The more she searched, the more she realized that a true business opportunity existed.

Her idea? Start a boutique fitness studio that provided daily dance classes for adults. To move that concept forward, Jennifer sought professional guidance to build a successful business.

Her first step was searching for educational opportunities in Denver’s startup community. She was thrilled when she found the LEADING EDGE™ NxLeveL for Entrepreneurs course offered through the Denver Small Business Development Center (SBDC). The 11-week course provided the structure for Jennifer to test the feasibility of her idea, analyze risk, determine her target market and build her business model.

“The Denver Metro SBDC’s course structure, content and process—including access to qualified consultants—helped me create a comprehensive business plan that secured $1.3 million in SBA 504 funding for the purchase of my studio,” Jennifer said.

Her studio, dance2b, opened in February 2014. Classes focus on classic and fusion dance styles for beginner, intermediate and advanced dancers. Dance2b offers a fun, relaxed environment where dancers of all skill levels can learn technique and choreography in hip hop, jazz, salsa, ballet, contemporary, modern and more.

Along her journey, Jennifer recognized the importance of her relationships with consultants at the Denver Metro SBDC and professionals at the Office of Economic Development and Colorado Lending Source. Their assistance helped with everything from her business name and tagline to the location and financing. She continues to maintain these relationships today and looks forward to growing dance2b with their support and guidance.

In talking with Jennifer about what she would recommend to other potential entrepreneurs, she says there are six key elements: “relevant education, genuine partnerships, useful intuition, determination, a playful attitude and flexibility.”

The PB Love CO

“We want to feed people real, delicious food and make them happy!” That’s how PB Love CO , a Denver Metro Small Business Development Center (SBDC) company describes themselves, and it’s apparent in everything they do. PB Love is committed to creating stone-ground, handcrafted, artisan nut butter, using only real-food ingredients in every jar they make. Mario Esparza had been perfecting the flavor, consistency and ingredients of his own nut butter for over 12 years,

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Under the Sky Event Rental

The idea to launch Under the Sky Event Rental came to Rebecca Anderson when she told her seatmate on a flight to Denver about her wedding. She and husband Patrick had their intimate wedding under katas—Nordic tents that resemble Native American tepees. But, she had only seen them rented in her native United Kingdom. “That planted the seed,” she said. Back in the U.K., there are roughly 30 kata rental companies, up from just seven

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Paleo Meals To Go

A few years ago, Ty Soukup went on his first multi-day backpacking trip around the Maroon Bells 14ers in Colorado. But, his biggest challenge wasn’t the terrain – it was figuring out what to eat. He couldn’t find any backpacking meal options that would fit with his Paleo diet. “I thought to myself, why isn’t someone making a backpacker meal that appeals to folks on alternative diets?” Soukup recalled. “It was in that moment that

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Moss Pink

A love of flowers led Jil Schlisner to buy an existing flower shop in 2006, rename it and build her business by creating inspirational, beautiful atmospheres for clients. She believes people should wear flowers more often, in the form of corsages and boutonnieres—and on ordinary Wednesdays, not only proms or weddings. Moss Pink Flora & Botanicals, located on E. 23rd and Dexter streets in Denver, provides clients with beautiful shopping environment, as well as personal

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Safe Rids 4 Kids

Firefighter. Paramedic. Emergency responder. Over an 18 year career, Greg Durocher spent his days and nights responding to some of the most devastating collisions and catastrophes. To prevent accidents and injury, Durocher decided to learn as much as possible about child passenger safety. “As responsible drivers we can only do our very best to ensure that our precious cargo is properly restrained with the best options available,” Durocher said, “so that if a crash occurs,

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Gel-Oh Dolly!

Do you want a fun, easy-to-use way to consume your favorite craft cocktails and deserts? That’s where Gel-Oh Dolly! comes in. Gel-Ol Dolly! is a grown-up twist on an old favorite. They provide a gourmet Jell-O shot mix for you to create your own fancy shot. For Dolly Fiedelman co-founder of Gel-Oh Dolly!, running her own company seemed natural coming from a family of entrepreneurs. The desire was always there – that’s why Fiedelman took

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