I was born and raised in Central Florida, growing up on beaches, boats and anything under the sun. Since a young age, I have always been determined to teach myself the skills needed to accomplish big tasks. I started making movies and producing music at age 12 and continue to do so today. I also have a thirst for education and have spent a great deal of time in classes learning things I was not able to teach myself. So far, I am a person who can be called an artist, filmmaker, photographer, scientist, inventor, musician, producer, business owner, student, husband, and currently, a social entrepreneur. Right now I am celebrating 8 years of being in business and looking to grow my venture to a larger audience, I am also simultaneously helping create a sustainable social venture for a new Non-Profit organization called Mind&Melody, Inc. I have a bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts, and studying post-baccalaureate Neuroscience in an Honor’s program.
I have always dreamed big, and although it often seems impossible to be able to work on a lot of things, it can be a juggling act- but when you have the right support network, and your ideas work, things fall into place and a great team with great planning makes all the difference. Currently, I have won a Startup Launch Competition at a Tech Accelerator for a new company and was awarded one year package of Entrepreneurial mentoring, A 16-week course in entrepreneurship, patent help, financial advising, design, and fabrication, office space and more.
My dreams since I was little were always to write and direct movies- those dreams are still there, and in many ways, I have accomplished the dream of being a Director, albeit on a small scale.
This loan is special because:
More about this loan
My wife and I opened our first business together in the spring of 2008 with $15,000 I had saved up, just before the Financial Crisis and Recession. We were able to persevere throughout the recession and formed a niche in our market. Through the success over the years, I have found myself being able to fully appreciate being self-employed, and the benefits that can come from the sacrifices one has to make with in order to build a business in a recession, without outside investments.
We are a company that sells new and used vintage and designer clothing. We also produce music, art, films, recycle and repurpose clothing, and provide a space for live music and social gatherings. We are currently working on our B-Corporation application and want to adopt a social mission and vision.
What is the purpose of this loan?
This Kiva loan will allow us the funds we need to expand our new online sales channels, we live in a seasonal economy in South Florida, and in order to combat the slow season we want to list our inventory online and get it in front of millions of eyes. We have had success listing clothing in small batches over the years, bringing in additional funds to the average of $25,000.00, however we only had time and energy to list a few hundred items, with a Kiva loan, we will be able to list 1,000s of items online- which I estimate to bring in an additional $75,000 to $100,000 of income for our business. This Kiva loan will be a huge benefit as we have time during the slow summer off-season to accomplish this task. My wife and I have been self-funding our business since the beginning, and to that accomplishment, we failed to realise the importance in building good credit- since neither of us accrued any personal debt other than a car loan, or students loans, we have had trouble expanding our business on our own, and thusly we have remained a mom and pop business, I now see the importance of outside capital and resources needed in order to grow.
Years in operation: More than 5 years