SCORE Mentors The Secret Chocolatier to Success
Andy and Robin Ciordia and Bill and Karen Dietz started test marketing the sale of chocolate and orange chocolate truffles at farmer's markets with good success in 2008 and 2009. With the families expertise they quickly expanded into more product lines that were also tested at regional markets. Along with this success game growing pains. And that's when the family looked to SCORE for assistance. http://www.thesecretchocolatier.com/
After nearly three years developing a following for its artisan chocolate confections at local farmers markets and retailers, The Secret Chocolatier, secured financing of an expansion loan and opened its first retail chocolate shop at Providence Plaza in Charlotte, NC.
When Andy came to see Charlotte SCORE mentor Chuck Sawicki in April 2010, he produced a well thought out business plan. Chuck also included Andy in communications with other compatible service sectors of the area. In addition, Charlotte SCORE Food Service Business Mentor and retired College Professor Allen Friedman reviewed the business plan and provided his expertise. He has also been invited to other functions in Charlotte to help network his growing business.
Andy says, "You helped me project a longer 5 year frame than the one year plan I had. You also helped me consider longer term thoughts on taking our business to much larger levels than I had envisioned. I look forward to coming back to you one day and making those thoughts a reality."