In Asbury Park, An Entrepreneurial Approach to Job Creation

Comments (5) Posted By Joe on February 21, 2013 in Business Basics, Partners in Empowerment

During the halcyon days of the dot-com boom, Roger Boyce shuttled between his Monmouth County home and Silicon Valley, where he worked for and founded high tech start-ups.

It was a rough commute even by New Jersey standards, but the entrepreneur kept it up for almost fifteen years before retiring from the industry in 2009.

That Boyce found himself restless after abandoning this frenetic pace should come as no surprise. Soon after returning to New Jersey, he began putting his business acumen to use in Asbury Park as an informal mentor.

Referring to the local bicycle shop with which he started, Boyce said, “I was helping them with general business coaching on a volunteer basis, then I picked up another client and another, then I had a half a dozen people I was mentoring.”

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Good Karma: Princeton Gallery to Display Fund Client’s Stone Art

Comments (5) Posted By Joe on February 15, 2013 in Entrepreneur Directory

Intersect Fund client Janis Blayne-Paul just got a new outlet through which to exhibit her unique, stone art.

The Brodsky Gallery at Princeton’s Chauncy Conference Center will display Paul’s work through March 31st; visitors can meet Blayne-Paul at the gallery during an opening event from 4 to 8 p.m. next Thursday, Feb. 21st.

On rough stones, Blayne-Paul etches a number of designs that reflect her customers’ interests, hobbies, or religious beliefs. Some feature yogic images like the “ohm” symbol; others depict Hindu deities or Hebrew good-luck charms. One of Blayne-Paul’s most popular stones features a lithe runner mid-stride.

Some customers have embedded the stones into kitchen backsplashes; others have used them as stepping-stones in gardens. One used a version of the “runner” stone to decorate the runners’ supply store she owns.

Fund Loan Leads to Salon Opening

Comments (4) Posted By Joe on February 12, 2013 in Entrepreneur Directory

Edison mayor Antoinette Ricigliano (left) helps Fund client Patricia Moreno cut the ribbon on her new salon — Morgan’s Hair Mastery — during its grand-opening ceremony on Feb. 7th.

When Patricia Moreno enrolled in an Intersect Fund business training class almost three years ago, she’d been working as a hairdresser for others and looking forward to start a business of her own.

This month, the grand-opening of Morgan’s Hair Mastery marked the realization of Moreno’s dream.

Moreno moved slowly but surely toward her goal. She initially sought to pursue a partnership that eventually dissolved, and she registered the current iteration of her business in the spring of 2011.

She continued doing hair on a commission basis as she hatched plans for striking out on her own. Last summer, she found a suitable space in Edison and received an Intersect Fund loan to help fix it up.

Then, on February 7th — Moreno’s birthday — the business hosted its grand-opening. Moreno’s salon — Morgan’s Hair Mastery — is located at 246 Plainfield Avenue in Edison, N.J.

Fund Disburses More than $46k to Perth Amboy Businesses

Comments (9) Posted By Joe on February 5, 2013 in About Us

In the past 11 months, the Intersect Fund has received 75 applications from Perth Amboy businesses and has disbursed more than $46,000 over 19 loans.

Here’s a breakdown of the types of loans we disbursed:

  • Eight credit-builder loans
  • Five disaster-relief loans
  • Six expansion loans

The Perth Amboy-based Jewish Renaissance Foundation helped ensure the Intersect Fund could expand its work in Perth Amboy, a city with a high concentration of entrepreneurs and one that Superstorm Sandy hit especially hard. The pins on the map at right represent locations of businesses that applied for loans; the blue pins represent disaster-relief loan applications.

The loans went to businesses such as grocery stores, restaurants, clothing stores, and more. Although the Intersect Fund is based in New Brunswick, we send our coaches and loan officers out to cities and towns throughout New Jersey. And with more than 700,000 microbusinesses in the Garden State, we’ve got our work cut out for us.