Pure Bliss Salon and Spa
In late 2011, Melissa Withey learned that the salon and spa she worked at was going to close. Melissa had developed a large clientele and the news of the closing put her livelihood, as well as the livelihoods of 33 other families, in jeopardy.
As Melissa talked to her husband Randy about what to do next, the pair became inspired by the vision of owning their own business. Soon after the salon’s closing announcement they met with the owner who indicated selling was a possibility. The Withey’s contacted the MI-SBDC office at Kettering University for counseling assistance about buying and operating the business. Senior Business Consultant Harry Blecker worked with them to assess feasibility and to develop a business plan and cash flow projections. The Witheys began negotiations with the owner but after several frustrating discussions, it became clear they wouldn’t be coming to terms.
The salon was set to close in just 60 days, but that didn’t deter Melissa and Randy, who were on a new mission of saving the jobs of their colleagues and friends. With the support of their co-workers, all of whom had also developed their own clientele, Melissa and Randy located and leased a location just three miles away. Loyal colleagues and clientele and a nearby location helped them launch the new business on established, solid relationships.
Randy and Melissa Withey officially launched Pure Bliss Salon and Spa in January 2012 with the help of 25 colleagues. According to Randy, taking on the challenges of owning and operating a small business was a time of both optimism and stress “but everyone came together to make it work.”
It didn’t take long to realize, however, that they needed different space, so Melissa and Randy made the difficult decision to move again, and within six months, a new location just yards from the original business location became available. With a new financial partner, Melissa and Randy made the move. Harry Blecker notes that “Melissa and Randy pushed through some very difficult and anxious times. Not only did they model entrepreneurial determination, but they pushed through with a greater mission – to save the jobs and livelihoods of others as well as themselves.”
In operation for almost two years now at their newest location, Pure Bliss Salon and Spa has 50 employees and is confident about growing the business and adding more jobs in the future.
Pure Bliss Salon was recently selected as the 2013 Best Small Business for the I-69 Trade Corridor Region, and will be honored at the Michigan Celebrates Small Business awards dinner in May of 2014.
For more information on Pure Bliss Salon and Spa, visit www.pureblisssalonspa.com.