Guidance with accounting tools from the Nebraska Business Development Center (NBDC) has helped owner Angela Scanlan brew a more efficient business at Cappuccino and Company in Scottsbluff.
While in high school, Scanlan worked under the original owner for about six months. When the business came up for sale in 2013, Scanlan’s mother, Janie, encouraged her to change careers from respite care provider to entrepreneur and coffee shop owner.
“I didn’t really know what I was getting into, but I found I had a passion for really good coffee,” Scanlan says.
Situated on Broadway beside the historic Midwest Theater, Cappuccino and Company has a patio for seasonal seating and recently added a delivery service but has no drive through. “I encourage people to get their steps that way,” Scanlan says, smiling.
She and her eight employees have adopted the motto, “Love is in the Details” —the primary detail being the coffee they serve, provided through a partnership with Tectonic Coffee Co. roasters in Los Angeles.
“It’s very high quality coffee, roasted from the top five percent of the beans in the world,” Scanlan says. “It’s organically grown and shipped to us every week.”
“We take an uncommon level of care to provide our customers a very memorable sip. We’re coffee geeks and totally proud of it.”
What Scanlan lacks enthusiasm for is accounting. “I love the creative aspect of my business but I really don’t like the nuts and bolts,” she says. “Accounting, bookkeeping, QuickBooks have been very difficult for me.”
Enter NBDC and now-retired consultant Ingrid Battershell. “Ingrid was recommended to me when I sought help learning QuickBooks and taking over some basic bookkeeping responsibilities,” Scanlan says. “She’s the most delightful person. She was patient and helpful as I learned the simplest things, like categorizing my business purchases to learn where the most money went each month. She explained everything in plain English and empowered me to handle the day-to-day transactions.”
Scanlan says Battershell’s guidance “happened early on and has played a huge part in our growth. Because of her help, I now keep up with the basic monthly purchase records and use QuickBooks to run payroll, reducing my ongoing costs for an accountant.”
Just as she works to grow her own business, Scanlan strives to help fellow small businesses. She is the volunteer president of the Downtown Scottsbluff Association (DSA), a non-profit organization responsible for many events including the Christmas parade and the Farmer’s Market.
She is also a volunteer member of the Riverside Discovery Center Zoo board, is a board member for the Business Improvement District (BID) for the City of Scottsbluff, and she supports the Business and Professional Women’s Foundation (BPW) and numerous other civic and charitable organizations.
Her business has been recognized for its success and contributions to the community. Cappuccino and Company won Small Business Employer of the Year from the BPW, and her coffee shop has been nominated Best Coffee House in the Star Herald Reader’s Choice Awards three years running. In addition, Scanlan has been named Western Nebraska Community College’s Young Alumnus of the Year.
She says it all comes back to her business motto. “‘Love is in the Details’ inspires everything we do,” she says. “People are very important to us.”
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The Nebraska Business Development Center (NBDC) helps Nebraska businesses start, grow and develop, by strengthening Nebraska businesses for a healthy economy and prosperous communities. NBDC is a University of Nebraska at Omaha center that provides confidential consulting business development services across Nebraska to entrepreneurs and business owners for the life cycle of their business. NBDC partners with the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, University of Nebraska at Kearney, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Wayne State College, and Chadron State College to deliver its services statewide. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), the U.S. Defense Logistics Agency (DLA), the U.S. Department of Commerce (EDA), and other federal, state and private organizations support NBDC. Visit nbdc.unomaha.edu for more information.
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