Research Guides Decisions: CS Gas, Inc.
Kansas SBDC at FHSU
And Horinek already knew about the propane delivery business.
As owner and operator of CS Gas, Inc. in Atwood, Kansas, she had worked in every part of the operations over the past twelve years.
What she didn’t know was if there was a viable market for fuel delivery and if purchasing a local fuel delivery business that was being offered for sale was a good strategy for growth.
Horinek knew that purchasing a new business and expanding services would require a new building, new delivery logistics, hiring more employees, and investing additional capital into the business. With expanded operations she would be challenged finding an office and shop large enough in the area to accommodate the growing business. And she would need a convenient location with good transportation access and visibility.
Horinek worked with Kansas SBDC consultant Megan Horinek, to comb through and analyze market research available to small business clients through the Kansas
SBDC. In addition to the market research Megan provided Horinek, Megan also provided Karen with information on the Neighborhood Revitalization Program to support building expansion in Atwood – a program of which Horinek was unaware.
In December of 2013, after working with the Kansas SBDC, Karen purchased the fuel delivery business and successfully incorporated it with the existing propane delivery business. CS Gas built a new facility taking advantage of the Neighborhood Revitalization tax abatement. Horinek credits this with providing a positive impact on her cash flow for several years to come.
Karen provided several pieces of useful advice from her experience with the Kansas SBDC and for other small business owners. Here are a few excerpts:
What do you believe is the secret to your success?
“Use market research to make informed decisions.” And, “Treating my employees like family so they will treat my customers right.”
If you could go back in time, what advice would you give yourself before opening your small business?
“Be ready for your business to grow, fast!”
What advice would you give to someone thinking about starting a business today?
“Think everything through very carefully. Assume nothing. Then stand behind the decisions you make.”
What advice would you give to a fellow small business owner?
“Have a good bookkeeper.”
Learn more about CS Gas, Inc. by calling 785-626-6357.