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Small Business Success Story: City Cakes and Café

Nanette and Dave Wessels have cooked up a successful recipe for delicious gluten-free and vegan baked goods.

Zions Bank Jun 14, 2018

In January 2010, Nanette Wessels fulfilled a dream of having her own cake shop by opening City Cakes & Cafe. By staying true to her business philosophy — to deliver a quality product with exceptional customer service — City Cakes has earned rave reviews. Flipkey by Tripadvisor named City Cakes to its list of “Best Local Bakeries Worth Traveling For.

Capitalizing on the tastes and demands of today’s consumers, the Wessels have found a niche by specializing in vegan and gluten-free baked goods. City Cakes offers more than 30 different vegan products and 20 different gluten-free products made from scratch daily with the top-quality ingredients.

The product line includes cinnamon rolls, cookies, muffins, scones, specialty cupcakes, lemon bars, peanut butter bars, and brownies, gluten free donuts, tiramisu and cheesecake, as well as

distinctive cakes professionally decorated for any occasion including weddings.

A U.S. Small Business Administration loan from Zions Bank has helped City Cakes & Café open two new retail stores and a new production facility.

“We now produce most of the products for our retail stores in the production facility, and we are able to expand our wholesale accounts to much larger regional distributions,” says Dave Wessels.

The Wessels learned several key lessons from their expansion:

  • Thoroughly research the need for your product or service in your area.
  • Create a business plan with accurate projections.
  • Don’t grow faster than you can manage your operation.
  • Treat each customer as if they were your only customer.
  • Budget build out costs as accurately as possible, then add a percentage for unexpected costs.

They also advise entrepreneurs to plan extra time for the process of approving building permits and business licenses.

Zions Bank Offers Support for Entrepreneurs

In addition to SBA loans, Zions offers financing for small businesses including credit cards, term loans, lines of credit and equipment leasing, plus checking and savings accounts.  Our Business Payments and Technology products and services can help your business optimize cash flow, streamline disbursements and reduce risk.

Zions Bank offers a wealth of resources for entrepreneurs, including Business Resource Centers in Utah and Idaho. The centers help aspiring, new or existing business owners start, expand and finance business ventures with the knowledge, tools and guidance needed to succeed. Services are complimentary and available to the public regardless of where you bank.

Check out Zions Bank’s online Business Resource Center, which includes business templates, financial calculators and expert columns

Loans are subject to credit approval. Terms and conditions apply. See a banker for details.

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