March 6, 2014
PIDC has always been inspired by the innovation and determination of its clients, and for over 50 years it has been in the business of putting its clients’ needs first. From small businesses, to non-profits, to manufacturing and corporate and commercial development; it’s been a priority to provide the necessary resources to support a businesses’ growth. Birgit Williams of EB Williams Construction ,one of our Emerging Business Loan clients, and recent graduate of the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Education Program,is a prime example of a business that has seen progression over the past several years. She was guided through the loan process with the help of Relationship Manager Marla Hamilton and Underwriter Evelyn Montalvo.
Birgit is the Vice President/ Controller for EB Williams Construction and runs the business with her husband. She is a 10 year Army Veteran with 15 years of management experience and is responsible for all functions in the area of Finance and Accounting and Fiduciary responsibilities. We asked Birgit to share a bit about her experiences here.
Describe your business for our readers.
Birgit– We began in 2004 as a HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning) Contractor with just two employees. Our scope of work now includes new building construction, interior and exterior building renovations and high efficiency HVAC and Mechanical applications. We currently have 7 employees.
Why did you decide to become an entrepreneur?
Birgit– To provide an excellence of service in the HVAC industry.
How long have you been a PIDC client?
What prompted you to contact PIDC for help?
Birgit– We needed educational, and financial assistance and were also in the market to move our office to Philadelphia.
Did you know anything about PIDC before you became a client?
Birgit-No, we contacted PIDC based upon the recommendation of the Philadelphia Housing Development Corporation.
What has the assistance from PIDC allowed you to accomplish with your business?
Birgit– Since 2010, we have participated with the Emerging Business Loan Program, which has provided us with financial assistance to complete contracts with PHDC (Philadelphia Housing Development Corporation) and ECA (Energy Coordinating Agency). I have also attended training that taught me financial management and understanding financial reports.
Why was it important for you to be a Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Business Scholar?
Birgit-I was really looking forward to the peer based learning and meeting other business owners in the Philadelphia area.
What immediate change have you seen in yourself after becoming a Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Scholar? What do you hope to accomplish as a result in the future?
Birgit-I can honestly say that participating in Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Business was a life changing event for me. I felt empowered from the very first day, and by the end course I truly felt like a leader and an entrepreneur. That’s not to say that I suddenly became perfect, but I am striving to improve any area that I feel I need improvement. In the future, I hope to hire more employees and serve as an example as a business leader.
What are some projects your company has been involved in?
Birgit– Currently, we are performing contracts at JOC McGuire, Dix, Lakehurst NJ; Naval Support Activity Philadelphia and have our 5th project with National Park Service, Philadelphia which included work at Independence Hall and Liberty Bell Center.
Do you have any advice for other small business owners?
Birgit– Never forget the reason why you decided to go into business. Enjoy your success, you have earned it! Expect the unexpected, and always try to better yourself.
For more information on how PIDC can assist your small business please contact Chamor Hollinger at 215-496-8157 or . For more information on becoming a Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesess Scholar please visit ccp.edu/10ksb .