Columbia Welcomes All Types of Business

4 years 7 months 4 days ago Friday, March 14 2014 Mar 14, 2014 Friday, March 14, 2014 4:03:00 PM CDT March 14, 2014 in News
By: Jay Wallis, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - Going into the entrepreneurial business can be a daunting task. As many Columbia business owners said, though, Columbia is a city that rewards these type of endeavors.

Bob Wood is one of these local business owners, as he runs Dawson's Shoe Repair. Shoe repair has been in his family for almost 100 years.

"I'm a third generation shoe repairman," Wood said. "My dad and my grandfather were both shoe repairmen."

When Wood's father, Estle Wood, decided he wanted a change of scenery for his family, it wasn't an easy decision to make.

"My dad came to Columbia in 1956 with three sons, a wife and three dollars in his pockets," Wood said. "And convinced a gentleman by the name of L.D. Johnson, who owned Dawson Shoe Repair at the time, to take a risk with him."

Wood was a child when his family made the transition to Columbia. He said he loved being around his father at work and helping in whatever way possible.

"I was raised in one of those families when it came down for allowance, I was shown what a broom and shovel could do," Wood said. "After school, they would come get me and I would come up here and I would sweep floors for a grand total of 50 cents a week. Big money back then."

Bob continued working for his dad as he grew up and his responsibilities continued to grow as well. When his dad retired in 1990, he became the sole owner of Dawson Shoe Repair.

"As I went to the store, I just thought that of I can come in and work, then I won't have to see my dad work so hard," Wood said. "Little did I realize that someday my grandfather would pass away, my dad would pass away and all that workload would come onto me."

Wood's store is still up and running today, and Wood said Columbia's diverse but loyal client base is a major reason he's been able to sustain his father's success.

"Even though it's over 100,000 people, it's still got a small town atmosphere," Wood said. "As far as I'm concerned, I don't know any place in the world where you can find a town like Columbia."

Mike Brooks is the president of Regional Economic Development, Inc. - REDI. He said what makes Wood's business work, though, is not necessarily what makes others successful.

"Columbia's economy is certainly unique and different because of the diversity of our employment base," Brooks said.

A much different Columbia company that opened up recently is Cracked Up Mobile. This is a store people can go to for many technological service, such as repair of mobile devices, buy and selling of devices or purchasing cellular service. The store's owner, Aaron Shepherd, started fixing phones as more of a hobby when he was younger.

"Early on, I just did stuff for friends, family and then it just gradually took off from there," Shepherd said. "I was based out of home for six months before I opened this store."

Today, he's the sole owner and operator of a business that opened up only five months ago. Shepherd said even though it was tough during the beginning, things have really picked up due to the University of Missouri starting its spring semester.

"When college students left and with other people going on vacation, it was tight, things were tough. And literally the week school started back up, business quadrupled."

Shepherd has plans to expand by 2019 and become a national franchise. Wherever Shepherd's business ends up in the future, he says none of what he has in the present would even be possible if not for one key factor.

"If I weren't in Columbia, I don't think all I'd be in the position I am," Shepherd said. "I might still be based out of home or not being able to do it full time."

REDI's Brooks said he understands the importance of location for these two owners.

"It really is a wonderfully diverse economy," Brooks said. "As the importance of entrepreneurship is understood, that is a potential driver to other individuals who are thinking about that as an avenue for business development."

Brooks also said the diversity of Columbia's employment base allows businesses to not just find customers but also find the right staff.

More News

Grid
List
(CNN) -- The former head of USA Gymnastics has been accused of removing documents linked to the Larry Nassar sexual... More >>
8 minutes ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 8:56:00 AM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
LAKE OF THE OZARKS - A 78-year-old Fenton man drowned Wednesday afternoon at Lake of the Ozarks. The incident... More >>
1 hour ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 7:39:00 AM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Centerpointe Hospital is opening a new location on International Drive in Columbia. The Tennessee-based company has one... More >>
2 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 6:55:00 AM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- Facebook has set up a "war room" at its California headquarters as part of its plans to avoid... More >>
2 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 6:32:00 AM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - November candidates want to earn your vote by discussing disability-related issues on Thursday. The City of Columbia... More >>
5 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 3:49:00 AM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
CALLAWAY COUNTY - The man killed in a helicopter crash east of Fulton on Wednesday has been identified as Charles... More >>
12 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 8:14:00 PM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
GASCONADE COUNTY - A school in Gasconade County went on lockdown on Wednesday after a juvenile threatened to self-harm nearby,... More >>
13 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 7:39:00 PM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia City Council approved a request on Monday to change the zoning of nearly 50 properties in... More >>
14 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 6:33:00 PM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY- Andy Neidert's building on the corner of East High Street and Madison Street has been collapsing and held... More >>
17 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 3:47:00 PM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
PANAMA CITY, Fla. - A former Missouri woman, now living in Florida's panhandle, said Wednesday she is experiencing the "catastrophic"... More >>
17 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 3:41:00 PM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Claire McCaskill's office has responded to a investigative piece by Project Veritas,which focuses on her campaign office. ... More >>
17 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 3:24:00 PM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- A white woman has been fired after video emerged of her confronting and blocking the entry of a... More >>
17 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 3:23:00 PM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY – Robert Pinhero created a GoFundMe page and is recruiting drivers to help get voters without a car... More >>
18 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 2:58:00 PM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
Cole County – From oil-dripping trucks to ones without seatbelts, Cole County Fire District officials say there's a pressing need... More >>
18 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 2:38:00 PM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
KINGDOM CITY - Eight people were arrested after the Callaway County Sherrif's Office found 3.5 pounds of methamphetamine, about one... More >>
18 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 2:23:00 PM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- At least 92 people in 29 states have been infected with a strain of multidrug-resistant salmonella after coming... More >>
19 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 1:11:43 PM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — In ads and speeches, Democratic U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill is pounding Missouri voters with a single... More >>
20 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 12:19:00 PM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - A multi-vehicle crash sent one man to the hospital with injuries right before the Wednesday morning commute.... More >>
21 hours ago Wednesday, October 17 2018 Oct 17, 2018 Wednesday, October 17, 2018 11:42:00 AM CDT October 17, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 46°
10am 48°
11am 51°
12pm 54°
1pm 56°