University of Wisconsin–Madison

Small Business Success Stories

The WI Small Business Development Center at UW-Madison works with hundreds of business each year. From start-ups to growing companies the SBDC assists clients as their businesses evolve. We work with individuals on business planning for start-ups, loan and financing preparation, management and operational issues as well as marketing and sales.

We offer no cost consultation, as well as non-credit courses. Our experienced consultants guide clients through the challenges of business start-up and ownership. All meetings are confidential, conducted on a one-on-one basis and are customized for the client. We work with many industries including manufacturing, construction, value-added agriculture, food service, technology, SAAS, retail and more.

In 2017 the center saw 334 consulting clients and helped clients start 30 new businesses. Clients also obtained over $10.47 million in capital.

We are proud to share our client’s stories with you!

See how the SBDC has helped these entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses!

Urban Assets

The idea for Urban Assets started with a mission: focus on projects that add value to the Madison community either through urban infrastructure or expanding community services.

SBDC Client Urban Assets


Voted Madison’s Best Food Cart AND Best Mediterranean restaurant, Banzo has been a client of the SBDC from their inception. They have two food carts, a restaurant in a building they now own, and a wholesale business for their hummus.

Aaron Collins Banzo

All Parents on Deck

Sharon Billings realized that minority parents struggled with being involved with their children's schools. AllParentsonDeck was born and Sharon began to facilitate meetings and events to help teachers and parents communicate.

Sharon Billlings

Healthy and Hygge

Sara Lasker leverages her unique skill set to coach people through life transitions as only eleven people in the world as a Master Certified Health Education Specialist.

Sara Lasker Healthy and Hygge

American Provenance

After making his own natural products he launched in May of 2015. Before he knew it, he employed eight people and stores and pharmacies across the state were carrying the products.

Kyle LaFond

The Cooper's Tavern

In business for just over a year, its owners attribute their quick success in part to the UW-Madison Small Business Development Center (SBDC) courses they took before launching the business.

Coopers Tavern

“Whenever I feel myself stuck, I just email Linda and say, ‘Can we meet?’” Sharon says. “And she always finds a way to meet with me. She’s an expert at what she does and she’s imparted her wisdom onto me.”