Statistics & Control Inc.
Startups & Paperwork
Statistics & Control Inc. (S&C), a new company headquartered in West Des Moines, Iowa, got help from the Business Innovation Zone (BIZ) when it came to one of the challenges facing many small businesses — paperwork. In the case of S&C, the company wanted to apply to the state of Iowa for a loan to help get the business off the ground.
"For the person who has never done it before, it's complicated," said company Vice President, Boris Pusin, one of S&C's four founders. The BIZ, headed by Executive Director, Mike Colwell, helped fill out the application.
S&C got the loan.
S&C started doing business last September, offering engineering consulting expertise in the design of gas turbine and compressor controls used in natural gas pipelines, oil refineries and electrical generating plants. The company also has developed software designed to optimize processes in ethanol production, oil refining and the movement of natural gas through pipelines.
Pusin, 45, was born and raised in St. Petersburg, Russia, and earned a master's degree in engineering, specializing in gas turbine and compressor design. He, his wife and small son came to the United States in 1992, settling in Iowa, where Boris got a job with a compressor control company in Greater Des Moines (DSM).
In 2007, Boris and three colleagues founded S&C. The company has plans to grow, increasing sales and expanding its work force to eight people by the end of the year and to 15 by the end of 2010.
In an interview, Boris talked about S&C and the help it received from the BIZ.
Q: How did you find out about the BIZ?
A: Business acquaintances suggested contacting the Greater Des Moines Partnership. We were referred to the BIZ by the Partnership.
Q: The BIZ helped with the loan application. What other help did the BIZ provide?
A: They helped develop a business plan. That's a major thing for a startup business — to develop the right plan. It should not be overly optimistic and should not be too conservative. Both of those are difficult to sell to investors. It should be somewhere in between.
The plan projects growth in sales and work force. It projects sources of income such as investment, loans and sales.
The BIZ also provided information and helped with the application process for an employee-training program sponsored by the Iowa Department of Economic Development and administered by Des Moines Area Community College.
Q: Is the help ongoing or was it a one-time thing?
A: I think of it as a long-term relationship. We continue working with Mike Colwell. We are looking, for example, for new hires and would like to target graduates from Iowa State University. He's hooking me up with the right people at Iowa State to find some employee prospects.
Q: How do you feel about the help that you got from the BIZ?
A: I feel great about it. The people are nice; they know what they're doing. Without their help, I'd be scrambling to adjust our business plan. They gave me a better perspective. The process was much quicker, rather than if I did it all on my own.
Q: Where are you now in the development of your business and what steps will follow?
A: We're in the startup stage, about eight months into operations. A main goal is to finalize development of our software products and start marketing them.
Square One DSM, an initiative of the Greater Des Moines Partnership, is formerly known as Business Innovation Zone (BIZ).