Bad Economy, Bold Moves
Think it’s a bad time to launch a new business? These brave entrepreneurs don’t.
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You’re cutting back, aren’t you? Spending more nights at home. Checking all the expenses, looking for fat to trim. That European vacation can wait. Squeeze another year (or two) out of the car.
Not these folks. The leading economic indicators look like they were mugged in a dark alley, but there are courageous entrepreneurs determined to kick some recession butt. In the past year, they have secured financing to start businesses at a time when established companies are looking for safe havens. They can’t be sure what will happen, but they’re hopeful, committed and ready to work.
If you want to find someone truly bullish on the economy, take a trip to Rehoboth Beach and look for Diane Minio. Don’t be surprised if she hands you a job application.
Minio opened Bella Mia Hair Boutique in February, and she couldn’t be happier. “The only problem I have is that I need additional people,” she says with a laugh. That’s what happens when you have a highly trained staff that has cultivated a loyal client base.
Minio and her husband, Tom, began thinking about opening a salon in late 2008. Her daughter, Michelle Vietri, has been a stylist in Rehoboth for seven years, and the Minios were looking to start their first venture. The break came when a popular Rehoboth business closed its doors, leaving attractive space and parking.
Two of Bella Mia’s colorists are Redken certified, says Minio. That means they have completed training in Manhattan and have expertise that goes beyond the usual standards at some salons. Because of their talents, clients followed them to Bella Mia, and a steady stream of local residents has flowed into the salon. Because of that, Minio is looking to hire two more stylists.
“The people who work here all get along, and the stylists have known many of their customers for a long while,” Minio says. “The future is wide open for us.”
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