Small Business WatchSeptember 27th, 2012
Valley ad agency buys building, plans move
Kiwico LLC, doing business as Brand It, an Advertising Agency, has bought a building in Spokane Valley, and Brand It plans to relocate there from a smaller, leased Valley space.
The agency will move to 122 N. Raymond from its present quarters at 12422 E. First, says Lisa Mathews, division sales manager, who owns the business with her husband, Dan Mathews.
"We have outgrown our old, 1,000-square-foot space," she says.
The 3,500-square-foot building that Kiwico bought is undergoing an interior and exterior remodel.
"It will have a real urban vibe, with reclaimed fir beams and posts and some existing brick masonry. There are 17-foot ceilings and rich cork floors," she says.
Mathews declines to disclose the terms of the transaction or the cost to remodel the building.
Spokane contractors handling the remodel are Jon Tettleton, of Old Hat Workshop, and Peter Matsubuchi, of the Carpentry Ant. Pat King, of All Wall Contracting Inc., of Post Falls, is doing the stucco on the building.
Dan Mathews, who had co-owned The Focus Group advertising agency for years, started Brand It in 2009 after merging the advertising agency with his wife's promotional products company.
"Now we are a one-stop shop," says Lisa Mathews.
The agency offers advertising and marketing, promotional products, television and radio media placement, branding, logo and Web design, and environment design, which is advertising on billboards and other outdoor signs.
In addition to the Mathewses, the agency employs five people and plans to add at least three more within a year.
Judy Werre, and her son, Jonathon Werre, both of Keller Williams Realty Spokane, handled the real estate transaction.
Belly dance company plans name change
Mystic Dream Dance Co. says it will change its name to Northwest Bellydance Co. later this fall.
Owner and Artistic Director Nefabit Hinton says the new name will clarify the company's purpose and make it easier to find on the Internet.
"The new name will better reflect what we are doing," she says.
Hinton started the company in 2000 with her mother, Delilah Ra Hinton, in Montgomery, Ala., and moved it to its present Spokane location at 5515 N. Oak in 2008. The company operates in about 750 square feet of space, in a home-based studio that her father, Don Hinton, remodeled when the company came to Spokane.
Nefabit Hinton is now the sole owner.
The company offers instruction in classical belly dance, tribal fusion, and improvisational tribal style for adults and children.
"Tribal fusion takes the traditional belly dance look back to Middle Eastern culture. There is less sparkle in the costumes and it is darker and more ethnic, but the music is more modern," she says.
Hinton has been dancing for more than 19 years, and teaching classes for about six. The company features three main dancers, including Hinton, three soloists, and about 14 dancers in the performing corp.
The classes range in price from $40 to $120 per month depending on frequency, and $12 per class on a drop-in basis.
The company performs at public events around Eastern Washington, Idaho, and western Montana, and offers performances for corporate events, weddings, and private parties. "We regularly perform two 15-minute dinner shows at Azar's Restaurant, every first and third Friday," she says. Azar's is located at 2501 N. Monroe, on Spokane's North Side.
Gift shop starts up in midtown Cd'A
Rising Moon Ranch Enterprises LLC, doing business as Rustic Romance, has launched a gift store in midtown Coeur d'Alene.
Owner Wendy Burgener Wallin says the store, at 901 N. Fourth, opened in July.
"I purchased the 100-plus year old building because it spoke to me," she says. "This is an up-and-coming area of Coeur d'Alene."
The building, which is an old house, has a total of about 1,500 square feet of floor space and didn't need any remodeling, but she says she painted both the interior and exterior. It previously housed Von Nash Interiors for a short time and prior to that a furniture store named the Painted Pig.
The shop will offer gifts that are handcrafted and "wild-crafted," which, Burgener Wallin describes as gifts put together by hand from natural supplies. She tries to stock the store with products from local merchants and artists, like Storywood Co., a company that repurposes old wood for furniture and other accessories.
"I have been told that this is where people are going to come Christmas shopping," she says.
Burgener Wallin purchased the building from Susan Economon and declines to disclose the terms of the transaction.
Rustic Romance has three employees in addition to the owner and plans to hire more as business increases.
Pizza Pipeline opens restaurant with bar
Spokane-based pizza delivery and take-out chain Pizza Pipeline Inc. plans to open on Saturday a dine-in restaurant here that will feature a full bar, says Mike Kight, who co-owns the new restaurant with his wife, Dawn Kight.
The establishment, called The Bar @ Pizza Pipeline and located at 1403 N. Division, will serve beer, wine, and liquor, along with pizza and sub sandwiches the chain is known for, Kight says.
The 1,500-square-foot restaurant will have a sports-bar theme and carry 50 beers, including a selection of 20 beers on tap, Kight says. The new endeavor will employ 18 people and will have a seating capacity of 81, he says.
It will be located next door to a conventional Pizza Pipeline.
Although The Bar @ Pizza Pipeline will serve adult beverages, the restaurant will be open to people of all ages, Kight says.
Pizza Pipeline Inc. has 14 outlets in Washington and Oregon.
Two Pizza Pipeline franchise operationsone in Bellingham and the other in Richlandhad tested the bar concept successfully, Kight says.
Half Round launches new website, product
Half Round Productions LLC, a Spokane-based video production company that specializes in making commercials, has launched a website, halfroundproductions.com, to help increase sales for its new product, Senior Moments, 30-second radio and television advertising spots aimed at baby boomers.
Kent Adams, a principal in the company, says traditionally, advertisers gear messages toward people 18 to 35 years old, but the baby boomer generation currently holds the greatest amount of wealth.
Adams says stations get exclusive rights to their market for two years when they purchase a spot, which he claims costs stations roughly 20 cents for every dollar the station would pay to produce the same advertising spot.
Half Round plans to begin marketing two other advertising spots, U.S. History by the Minute and Car Tips, later this year.
Adams previously was a partner at Quicksilver Media Spokane LLC before opening Half Round Productions in May. He's is one of three principals in the company. Of the others, Tom McArthur generally handles scripts and research for spots, while Rick Inman acts as videographer.
Adams says the company doesn't anticipate hiring any additional staff, but does contract out for sales staff with four salespeople currently located in Spokane and California.
Half Round Productions doesn't have a physical office location.
Elephant Boys adds KingFisher boat line
Spokane Valley boat dealer Elephant Boys has added KingFisher heavy-gauge aluminum boats to the lines it carries.
KingFisher, a Vernon, British Columbia-based boat builder, manufactures 16-foot to 33-foot boats for lake, river, and ocean fishing. Until recently, the company's boats were sold in the U.S. under its Jetcraft brand name.
Ed Conley, who owns Elephant Boys, located at 12622 E. Sprague, says the KingFisher product line is ideal for the Spokane-Coeur d'Alene market.
Other boat makes Elephant Boys carries include its top-selling Lowe brand, River Hawk, and North River. The dealership also carries Carnai boat trailers and sells and services Evinrude, Tohatsu, and Mercury outboard motors.
The Elephant Boys employs four people and occupies 10,000 square feet of sales and service space in a building just east of the Spokane Valley White Elephant Surplus toy and sporting goods store.
Conley, a former co-owner of White Elephant, left that family-owned company in 2007 to concentrate on selling boats.
Cd'A Great Harvest to move next month
Teresa Cipicchio, owner of Taste of the Good Life LLC, is moving a Great Harvest Bread Co. franchise bakery in Coeur d'Alene next month.
Cipicchio says the Great Harvest outlet currently located at 2106 N. Government Way will move the week of Oct. 15 into a retail strip at 3510 N. Government Way, into space vacated by Spokane-based The High Nooner Inc.
The High Nooner, which has four Spokane-area sandwich shops it will continue operating, left the Coeur d'Alene market the end of August, says its general manager, Jim Lucas. He says the Idaho store operated for 6 1/2 years, but its lease had ended and sales there hadn't met projections.
The Great Harvest bakery in Coeur d'Alene, which employs eight to 10 people, sells a variety of breads, but also offers sandwiches and soups for lunches, Cipicchio says. She says the new store will be near the northeast corner of Government Way and Neider Avenue, located close to a Costco store, and will have better visibility.
"It won't be as difficult for people to find me," Cipicchio adds. The location that the store is vacating is located a block north of the Ironwood Plaza.
She says a different franchise owner operates two Great Harvest Bread Co. locations in the Spokane area, one of them in Liberty Lake and the other on the South Hill. The Dillon, Mont.-based Great Harvest chain has more than 220 bakeries in 43 states, its website says.
Virtual admin office relocates downtown
Peacock Virtual Solutions LLC, a company that specializes in providing virtual business assistance, such as receptionists and bookkeepers who work remotely, moved to a larger location downtown at the end of last month.
The 2,300-square-foot office space is located at 114 W. Pacific. Josh King, vice president of operations, says the company moved from its former location on Spokane's North Side, at 624 W. Hastings in the Wandermere area, because of space constraints. The business had been at that location since February 2011.
King says the 820-square-foot office there was too small to accommodate a large number of clients or contractors at one time. He says it took about five months to find a new location.
"Being downtown made it a lot easier to travel and meet up with our local clients," King says.
Peacock Virtual Solutions currently employs three full-time employees and more than a dozen subcontractors.
He says the company, owned by Laura Willson, actively bills about 20 clients a month.