TMC Financing, a commercial real estate lender specializing in Small Business Administration (SBA) 504 loans, recently helped Oaktown Spice Shop, secure financing to purchase a 6,625 square-foot industrial warehouse in Berkeley, CA. This $1.95 million acquisition spearheaded their expansion and will be instrumental in streamlining their production.
Oaktown Spice Shop co-owners John Beaver and Erica Perez pride themselves on being able to offer high-quality, hand-mixed spice blends through several retail locations in the Bay Area. They source the best-tasting version of each individual spice by working with hundreds of different importers and grinding their spices in-house. As a result, Oaktown customers can purchase fresh, flavorful spices to use in their own kitchens.
Perez and Beaver’s path to success began in 2009 when they moved to Oakland and found a community that placed immense value on food, but not as much value on where they bought their spices. With Beaver’s extensive knowledge and enthusiasm for spices, and Perez’s experience as a journalist, the couple enthusiastically embraced the possibility of opening their own spice shop to compliment this culinary neighborhood.
“Oaktown Spice Shop began as a vague idea that quickly flourished into reality,” states Perez. “John knew everything there is to know about spices and my experience as a newspaper reporter allowed me to become an expert in the field and build a thorough business plan.”
In 2011, Beaver and Perez officially launched Oaktown Spice Shop. Beaver worked full-time at the shop while Perez assisted on nights and weekends. Since then, Erica has joined the shop full-time, and three retail shops opened to cater to an extensive list of repeat clients.
Oaktown Spice Shop Utilizes SBA 504 Loan
“Owning property was a strategic business move that was long overdue,” explains Beaver. “Every year, particularly around the holidays, we were bursting at the seams attempting to manage inventory, production and packaging out of our retail locations.”