Small Business Owners Speak On Current Economic Outlook

Small Business Owners Speak On Current Economic Outlook

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MOBILE, Ala. -

Mr. Sam's Salon and Gifts, is a woman's one stop shop - from a nail and hair salon, to fine jewelry, and even a consignment shop.

"I've found one thing that helps our small business is having a variety of things. If one thing is slow, something else might be going hot and heavy at the time," said Lenny Zanghi, the store co-owner.

He says his business first started as a hair salon 50 years ago, but has added services over the years to fit public needs.

"People are going to come into a place that they are familiar with. I think that it's best in this economic climate that we do have an established business really. It's hard to start one up these days," said Zanghi.

Lance Hallmark knows what it takes to start up a small business. "There is a lot of red tape. We have to open permits, close permits, the fire department, sprinkler system," said Hallmark.

His newest business, Freeze Frozen Yogurt, has been open for just 8 months, and being located inside Bel Air Mall, his customer traffic is at the will of passers-by.

"The economy is getting better. Tax season was better than last year. I also own Rock and Roll Sushi and we see things turning for the better definitely," said Hallmark.

Down the street at Flowerama, the store owner, Bill Enfinger, says he sees improvement in the economy, but still finds himself cutting back to stay afloat. He has five employees on staff, but could use two more.

"We are above minimum wage which is not a lot. That money is just not there to do it, and like I said many of our employees are are part-time employees," said Enfinger.

Still with uncertainty of tomorrow's economic outlook, these business owners tell me it's worth it.

"There's not a lot left over, but we are maintaining," said Enfinger.

The report conduct by PNC Financial Services surveyed 151 small businesses in Alabama.  It concluded, 17 percent expect sales to drop, 22 percent expect profits to decrease and 16 percent expect to reduce their number of employees.

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