In the eight years since Glenn Lathrop started Desert Sun Coffee Roasters, he has reached out for help to Joe Keck and the SW Colorado SBDC numerous times. “I’ve worked with them since the beginning,” he explains.
Lathrop, President and owner of Desert Sun, asked Keck to generate lists of potential customers for his coffee. Desert Sun is a wholesale coffee roaster. Lathrop buys imported green coffee beans, then roasts them creating custom blends. They then sell the coffee to grocery stores, café’s, natural grocery stores and restaurants. Although their focus is in the Southwest, they currently ship over 100,000 pounds of coffee a year to over a dozen states.
Over the course of the business, Lathrop has taken courses, such as Marketing for Smarties and the Lean Manufacturing workshop. “As a small business owner, I have strengths and weaknesses. The SBDC is a great resource and helps with places where I don’t have expertise.”
Lathrop has received assistance with financial planning, doing spread sheets and ratio analysis. This includes how his business compares to similar businesses and how his own numbers compare year to year. He meets quarterly with SBDC advisor, Terryl Peterson to do a financial analysis including cash flow projection and planning.
As the business changes and evolves, and Joe Keck becomes more familiar with Lathrop and his business, he often calls to say, “Hey, have you thought of this?” Lathrop enjoys the relationship and shares, “The SBDC is a great resource. They are always there thinking – how can we help make this business more successful?”
Desiring to expand in 2013, Lathrop will ask Keck about places to apply for funding. “I know he can point me in the right direction and save me lots of time with his knowledge of resources and types of funding available. When I come up with questions during the year, I always call Joe.”