Have you been behind the wheel of the S197 Mustang at 160 mph, with adrenaline pumping through your veins? Steve Puffpaff, owner of Blowfish Racing, knows that well. And thanks to the business consultants at the Waukesha County Center for Growth, his business, which manufactures aftermarket performance parts for late model Ford Mustangs, has moved from Stevensville, Maryland, to Waukesha.
Steve started fabricating parts while building his own track-driven Mustang out of his garage, as there was little selection in the aftermarket for track-oriented Mustangs. Through social media, he showed other enthusiasts what he created for his car, and the requests to produce more parts started pouring in. He established Blowfish Racing in 2012 and began using outside vendors to produce components. In 2015, he moved the business into a commercial space to handle the product line growth and added equipment to move toward in-house manufacturing.
Before deciding to move to Wisconsin, Blowfish Racing learned about the Wisconsin Small Business Development Center (SBDC) business consultants working at the Waukesha County Center for Growth.
Steve and his prospective business partner initially approached the consultants with their ideas. The business consultants at the Center for Growth helped them assess the risks and challenges of the plan and discussed their capabilities as a company at this stage.
As a result, the business consultants helped Blowfish Racing develop a sound business plan, starting by developing a clear view of its value proposition, operations, customers and finances. After working together to build the company’s financial projections for the next three years, Steve was able to decide on how Blowfish Racing would operate in their 4,600-square-foot facility in Waukesha.
Steve recognizes the value the business consultants provided for this business and is optimisitc about the future. “The SBDC and Center for Growth helped us create a solid business plan and pro forma financial statements for Blowfish Racing. But perhaps more importantly, we were able to make some critical decisions about how the business would operate in its next phase of growth.” •
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