A woman in Ithaca, N.Y., wants to open her own lumberyard and has turned to crowdfunding to help raise the necessary capital. Kelly Evans, a veteran financial consultant, is looking to raise $200,000 on her Go Get Funding page.
“The $200,000 is not to get the business up and running,” Evans told ProSales. “It’s to purchase the property that already includes a huge building, and to pay for the repairs to the existing building.” She’s still looking for potential investors, but figured “it couldn’t hurt” to try crowdfunding to get part of the money she needs. The rest of the funds she requires will pay for equipment, inventory, and building a storefront on the property she wishes to buy.
Evans will be the executive officer and plans to spend half her time in her office and half her time on the floor.
“I want to have a lot of interaction with my customers," she says. "My key thing, above the fact that I want great customer service coming from my people, is that I want customers to know they can have access to the top person if there’s a problem." She will also apply for certification as a Woman Owned Business and has already applied for membership to the National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC).
Evans has wanted to start her own business for the last five years and hasn’t chosen LBM lightly. She’s been a business consultant for LBM companies before and has even worked as a builder. “I love the construction industry and I know all the contractors, architects, and property managers in my area. I have a really good relationship with them and I’m really good at the business side of it.”
Evans got to know the professionals in her area from her work as a business consultant with Ithaca’s only lumberyard, Cayuga Lumber. Evans stopped consulting for that yard last year in order to focus on opening her own business.
Cayuga Lumber will be Evans’s only competition, as the other lumberyard near Ithaca, Millspaugh Lumber in Trumansburg, N.Y., closed last year. Local contractors also have the option of going to the big box stores, but Evans says that they dislike going there. So what will set her apart? “I have an idea for this business in the first year that will blow it out of the water,” says Evans.
To find out what her idea is, to learn about her business plan, or to become an investor, contact her at 607.342.6691 or firstname.lastname@example.org.