Owner: Brittany Bedwell
Year Started: 2017
Location: 620 First Street, Kennett, Missouri
Number of Employees: 3
Advice for other entrepreneurs: “Make sure you have a good support system and make sure that if you are planning to have employees that everyone works as a team.”
Giving new life to a legacy.
Brittany Bedwell was working on her bachelor’s degree as a graphic designer at the College of the Ozarks when she learned that a local print shop in Kennett was looking for a new owner. The current owner Bob Hancock wanted to retire from the business but didn’t have someone to take over or purchase the shop. Gamble Printing Company had been in business since 1973 with a steady base of customers.
When Brittany learned of the situation at Gamble, she knew this was an opportunity meant for her to seize. She discussed the idea with her parents who were onboard right away; they knew this was a good path for their daughter to embark on. It also meant she wouldn’t need to look for a job somewhere far away from home, which was important to them.
Building the right network and team.
Brittany and her family reached out to Bob to learn more about the business. From there, they became connected to Jim Grebing, Kennett Director of Economic Development, who then connected them to the SBTDC. After receiving help with business planning and financial forecasting, it was determined a small business loan was needed to make this work.
Over several months Brittany, Jim, and the SBTDC worked with a local bank to show them why Brittany was the perfect fit to take over this local legacy business. This generational shift in ownership would help revitalize the business.
After gaining the local bank’s support, Brittany took over operations in the fall of 2017. Even though the new owner was in her early 20’s, the now Gamble-Bedwell Printing team still benefited from over 40 years of experience. Tommy Gamble, the original owner, had stayed on board with the business when Bob purchased it from him. When Brittany took over it was important that Tom stayed on board as well, to ensure his vast amount of expertise and experience with the printing equipment didn’t go away.
A family effort.
The transition could not have happened without the endless support from Brittany’s family. Her parents were there from day one and helped push the project forward. While her name is on the ownership papers, this is truly a family business where everyone chips in as necessary. Brittany’s mom helps with the administrative tasks of the business, while her dad lends a hand when a machine needs to be fixed.
For more information on Gamble-Bedwell Printing, visit their Facebook page.
For more information on the SBTDC or to make an appointment with one of our counselors, go to our Businesses page.