Oaktown Spice Shop Savors Growth Following Expansion with SBA 504 Loan

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TMC Financing, a commercial real estate lender specializing in Small Business Administration (SBA) 504 loans, recently helped Oaktown Spice Shop, secure financing to purchase a 6,625 square-foot industrial warehouse in Berkeley, CA. This $1.95 million acquisition spearheaded their expansion and will be instrumental in streamlining their production.

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We only had to come up with 10 percent down with the 504 loan, it’s the most affordable option out there.

TMC Financing, a commercial real estate lender specializing in Small Business Administration (SBA) 504 loans, recently helped Oaktown Spice Shop, secure financing to purchase a 6,625 square-foot industrial warehouse in Berkeley, CA. This $1.95 million acquisition spearheaded their expansion and will be instrumental in streamlining their production.

Oaktown Spice Shop co-owners John Beaver and Erica Perez pride themselves on being able to offer high-quality, hand-mixed spice blends through several retail locations in the Bay Area. They source the best-tasting version of each individual spice by working with hundreds of different importers and grinding their spices in-house. As a result, Oaktown customers can purchase fresh, flavorful spices to use in their own kitchens.

Perez and Beaver’s path to success began in 2009 when they moved to Oakland and found a community that placed immense value on food, but not as much value on where they bought their spices. With Beaver’s extensive knowledge and enthusiasm for spices, and Perez’s experience as a journalist, the couple enthusiastically embraced the possibility of opening their own spice shop to compliment this culinary neighborhood.

“Oaktown Spice Shop began as a vague idea that quickly flourished into reality,” states Perez. “John knew everything there is to know about spices and my experience as a newspaper reporter allowed me to become an expert in the field and build a thorough business plan.”

In 2011, Beaver and Perez officially launched Oaktown Spice Shop. Beaver worked full-time at the shop while Perez assisted on nights and weekends. Since then, Erica has joined the shop full-time, and three retail shops opened to cater to an extensive list of repeat clients.

Oaktown Spice Shop Utilizes SBA 504 Loan

As Oaktown Spice Shop flourished, Beaver and Perez recognized that purchasing a building for their business was the optimal way to streamline their spice production.

“Owning property was a strategic business move that was long overdue,” explains Beaver. “Every year, particularly around the holidays, we were bursting at the seams attempting to manage inventory, production and packaging out of our retail locations.”

The SBA 504 Program enabled Beaver and Perez to purchase their Berkeley warehouse with 90 percent financing at a below-market, fixed rate, fully amortized for 25 years.

“Oaktown Spice was the perfect candidate for SBA 504 financing,” stated Bryce Fennell vice president of TMC Financing who helped facilitate the deal. “The 504 loan allows business owners to purchase, renovate, construct or refinance commercial real estate with only a 10 percent down payment. As a result, businesses can retain working capital for continued growth.”

Perez considered conventional financing, but ultimately decided that they wanted to preserve their cash.

“We only had to come up with 10 percent down with the 504 loan,” said Perez. “It’s the most affordable option out there.”

“TMC Financing guided us every step of the way and educated us on concepts that we were unfamiliar with,” concluded Perez. “Now that we have the space to optimize production and our retail locations are reopening, we can become laser focused on maximizing our sales. It is truly an exciting prospect.”

More About TMC Financing

TMC Financing is the No. 1 provider of SBA 504 commercial real estate in the Western United States. For 40 years, TMC has provided $10 billion in financing across California Nevada and Arizona. More than 6,000 businesses have benefited from this financing, resulting in the creation of an estimated 60,000 jobs. For more information on SBA 504 loans and the local businesses they support, http://www.tmcfinancing.com

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Amanda Near
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