New Opportunities Open For Potential Business Owners

2 years 10 months 4 weeks ago January 07, 2014 Jan 7, 2014 Tuesday, January 07 2014 Tuesday, January 07, 2014 9:03:00 PM CST in News
By: Paige Travis, KOMU 8 Reporter

FULTON - New efforts are being made in Fulton to encourage potential business owners to strongly consider making an investment in the town. A group of seven Fulton business owners, bankers and educators have launched what they're calling an Entrepreneurial Initiative board under the Fulton Area Development Corporation. The board was created to help promote community involvement and to better guide potential business owners in the area.

Small towns have traditionally struggled with the constant change in spending patterns, outside competition and new merchandising techniques. The Entrepreneurial Initiative will help mentor prospective business owners about how to successfully begin developing retail and business strategies.

Board members said the Fulton area is in an ideal location for business growth with close access to the highway, two colleges and the Callaway County Courthouse. New businesses would help fill vacant storefronts and commercial buildings in the downtown "Brick District," and would bring in additional sales tax in revenue to the city of Fulton.

Fulton Area Development Corporation President Bruce Hackmann said residents often have to leave Fulton to buy resources that are not offered locally.

"We've always said our location is a blessing and a curse. It's a blessing in the fact that we have access to larger communities nearby that bring things to the table that we can take advantage of, but at the same time, we feel like we have a lot to offer in a community like Fulton," he said.

Hackmann also said providing material for the needs of local shoppers is an ongoing battle.

"That's the constant goal that we have in a community like this is to try to provide those types of services and goods that people want," he said.

He said smaller towns often struggle to compete with cities with more resources.

"This is something that a lot of communities have recognized because of the competitive nature of economic development and trying to attract a large business or a large industry to your community with a lot of jobs, it's so competitive," Hackmann said.

Fulton's was one of 39 downtowns in Missouri to be selected for the state's Downtown Revitalization and Economic Assistance for Missouri Initiative (DREAM) program. The initiative held focus groups and community surveys to form a strategic plan about how to increase downtown traffic and help fill vacant space. A recent survey showed that potential service and retail businesses would be the most profitable way to fill vacant space downtown.

PGAV Planners, an urban planning and consulting company, partnered with the DREAM initiative to analyze how Fulton residents felt about the town's resources. Its analysis showed the most room for financial gain in grocery stores, restaurants and building material and supplier dealers. The retail market analysis found that a lack of local retail businesses and building renovations were contributing factors to the low success rate of the Fulton area shopping experience.

One new business owner said the community has become more invested in growing the town's financial potential, after the restructuring of the Brick District Association.

Well Read co-owner Brian Warren and his wife moved to mid-Missouri from California. The couple opened a bookstore in the Brick District last October because they said they saw potential in the town's atmosphere.

"The neat thing about being in a small town is that... whatever you do has a big impact," Warren said.

He also said there is a need for more retail stores.

"We definitely need more businesses. We want more retail establishment to come down here and see what we are doing and realize just like we did when we started our business a year ago, that there's a lot of opportunity here and there's a ton of upside to investing in Fulton," he said.

The analysis also showed that residents made use of their close proximity to Columbia and Jefferson City by obtaining resources that were not offered in the area.

A telephone survey administered in 2009 as a part of the DREAM Initiative identified that most residents wanted to see more dining and retail shops in the downtown area and showed discontent with the Brick District's lack of entertainment and after hours options.

The new Entrepreneurial Initiative has board members from the Callaway Bank, Westminster College, and other local businesses represented. Hackmann said the diverse group will further advance economic development programs.

"We think we are ahead of the game in terms of having some of those resources already in the community," he said.

The Callaway Bank is offering to give new downtown business owners two percent of the purchasing loan cost to new businesses for two years. The two percent initiative will be given to businesses to enhance physical improvements, upgrade equippment and stock inventory.

The initiative board plans to release more information about mentoring programs, recruiting and a possible innovation center in the new year.

More News

Grid
List
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — A man with a history of violent sex offenses dating back to the 1960s has been... More >>
19 minutes ago December 06, 2016 Dec 6, 2016 Tuesday, December 06 2016 Tuesday, December 06, 2016 11:35:57 AM CST in News
WARRENSBURG (AP) — At a time when reports of anti-Muslim sentiment are rising, members of a west-central Missouri Islamic Center... More >>
41 minutes ago December 06, 2016 Dec 6, 2016 Tuesday, December 06 2016 Tuesday, December 06, 2016 11:14:00 AM CST in News
COLUMBIA - Schurz and McDavid residence halls on the University of Missouri's campus could close indefinitely after the 2016-17 school... More >>
58 minutes ago December 06, 2016 Dec 6, 2016 Tuesday, December 06 2016 Tuesday, December 06, 2016 10:57:00 AM CST in News
CLAYTON (AP) — St. Louis County police are searching for a man who allegedly tried to run over officers with... More >>
1 hour ago December 06, 2016 Dec 6, 2016 Tuesday, December 06 2016 Tuesday, December 06, 2016 10:16:00 AM CST in News
CRESTWOOD (AP) — Officials in St. Louis County's Rockwood School District are investigating after a school bus caught fire on... More >>
1 hour ago December 06, 2016 Dec 6, 2016 Tuesday, December 06 2016 Tuesday, December 06, 2016 10:09:47 AM CST in News
CLAYTON (AP) A 24-year-old Missouri woman is accused of causing a wreck last weekend that killed a passenger in her... More >>
1 hour ago December 06, 2016 Dec 6, 2016 Tuesday, December 06 2016 Tuesday, December 06, 2016 10:03:54 AM CST in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A rock-loving orangutan named Rubih is suspected of going ape on the observation windows of her... More >>
2 hours ago December 06, 2016 Dec 6, 2016 Tuesday, December 06 2016 Tuesday, December 06, 2016 9:16:00 AM CST in News
COLUMBIA - Residents in the Columbia area will be able to speak their minds Tuesday at a public hearing about... More >>
9 hours ago December 06, 2016 Dec 6, 2016 Tuesday, December 06 2016 Tuesday, December 06, 2016 2:35:00 AM CST in News
COLUMBIA - Two members of the Delta Upsilon fraternity, who wished to remain anonymous, told KOMU 8 News Monday night... More >>
12 hours ago December 05, 2016 Dec 5, 2016 Monday, December 05 2016 Monday, December 05, 2016 11:33:00 PM CST in News
ST. LOUIS - Governor-elect Eric Greitens' wife Sheena was robbed at gunpoint Monday night. According to KSDK, St. Louis Police... More >>
14 hours ago December 05, 2016 Dec 5, 2016 Monday, December 05 2016 Monday, December 05, 2016 9:49:00 PM CST in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Missouri is seeing an increase in the number of state highway fatalities, and MoDOT is worried it's... More >>
16 hours ago December 05, 2016 Dec 5, 2016 Monday, December 05 2016 Monday, December 05, 2016 7:19:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA - A group of University of Missouri students exceeded everybody's expectations in gift giving this holiday season, and the... More >>
17 hours ago December 05, 2016 Dec 5, 2016 Monday, December 05 2016 Monday, December 05, 2016 6:49:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA – Columbia is looking to cut down on traffic deaths and serious injuries, and is looking to join a... More >>
17 hours ago December 05, 2016 Dec 5, 2016 Monday, December 05 2016 Monday, December 05, 2016 6:36:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA – The Columbia City Council voted 5-2 in opposition to an ordinance that would have revised some licensing regulations... More >>
17 hours ago December 05, 2016 Dec 5, 2016 Monday, December 05 2016 Monday, December 05, 2016 6:10:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA - Engineering crews kicked off three months of work on Nifong Blvd. on Monday as part of the road's... More >>
18 hours ago December 05, 2016 Dec 5, 2016 Monday, December 05 2016 Monday, December 05, 2016 5:49:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA - The fourth annual CoMoGives Campaign has some lofty goals for the 2016 holiday season, hoping to raise more... More >>
21 hours ago December 05, 2016 Dec 5, 2016 Monday, December 05 2016 Monday, December 05, 2016 2:19:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA — Columbia police grew furry faces during a No Shave November fundraiser to benefit a local children's home. ... More >>
21 hours ago December 05, 2016 Dec 5, 2016 Monday, December 05 2016 Monday, December 05, 2016 1:59:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA — A single-car crash left a Fulton woman dead on Interstate 70 near Highway 40 and the Midway Travel... More >>
22 hours ago December 05, 2016 Dec 5, 2016 Monday, December 05 2016 Monday, December 05, 2016 1:53:00 PM CST in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 36°
12pm 39°
1pm 39°
2pm 40°
3pm 41°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

11:00a
Rachael Ray
12:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Noon
12:30p
Inside Edition
11:00a
Jerry Springer
12:00p
Jerry Springer
1:00p
Maury

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
The Voice
8:00p
This Is Us
9:00p
Chicago Fire
7:00p
The Flash
8:00p
No Tomorrow
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld