Monday, May 1, 2017

Prospect Cleaning Service, Inc. - Flatbush, NY

Prospect Cleaning Service, Inc. - Flatbush, NY

When faced with new business challenges and opportunities, having a team of knowledgeable advisors ready to help can be an invaluable resource, as Ingrid Murray, owner and president of Prospect Cleaning Service, Inc., has learned. 

Prospect Cleaning Service provides commercial cleaning services in the metro-New York region. In 2011, when she acquired the business from her husband, she already had excellent experience as its bookkeeper and office manager. What she needed, though, was guidance on ways to focus her work, finance it and help it grow.

When Ingrid needed funding, online lenders offered easy applications and access to cash, but also high interest rates and unreasonable terms. Soon, she was buried in debt repayments of nearly $4,000 monthly – a huge burden for her small business. 

Fortunately, in August 2016, Ingrid turned to Excelsior Growth Fund (EGF) – and she got much more than she expected. EGF first helped Ingrid refinance her existing loans using a $30,000 SmartLoan™. This reduced her monthly payments to just $451 a month – a huge difference that turned her financial position around. 

Then, help from EGF’s Business Advisory Service (BAS) team kicked in. Shortly after receiving the loan, Ingrid won major contracts for snow removal with the City of New York and a major national drugstore chain at around the same time. Despite her experience, Ingrid was having trouble working out her cash flow projections, which changed dramatically due to the contracts’ payment structures and the need to bring on and pay for additional staff. Ingrid’s BAS advisor worked with her one-on-one to analyze the contracts and build out updated cash flow projections that would ensure that Prospect Cleaning stayed in good financial standing during a period of significant growth. The advisor also helped Ingrid see where an additional cash infusion could help support growth.

“The business advisory team taught me to look for funding before it’s needed. If I did that before, I would have been in a better financial position and not felt pressured to work with a predatory lender,” says Ingrid. This time around, Ingrid knew to turn to EGF straight away. Ingrid and her BAS advisor worked hand-in-hand to assemble a comprehensive application for a second $50,000 EGF loan, which was approved.

Through the business assessment conducted by Ingrid’s BAS advisor, the team identified another significant opportunity to drive business growth – creating a new brand and digital marketing plan. As a result, EGF secured a consultant through the EGF Consulting Corps—at no cost to Ingrid—to improve Prospect Cleaning Service’s website and launch a digital marketing strategy.  With an eye to the future, Ingrid is well positioned to maintain her momentum.