Cadillac Culvert Wins 2012 Best Small Business Award

Cadillac Culvert -

via UpNorthLive

Twelve companies from around the state of Michigan have been selected to receive the Michigan Small Business & Technology Development Center’s (MI-SBTDC) Best Small Business Award. These companies were chosen from over 13,000 small businesses that the MI-SBTDC provided with confidential counseling and training in 2012. The Best Small Business award recipients were identified based on their success in creating jobs, increasing sales, improving their business strategy and their involvement with the MI-SBTDC. These recipients will be honored at the Michigan Celebrates Small Business awards ceremony on May 2, 2013.

“The Best Small Business Award provides the MI-SBTDC network with an opportunity to acknowledge exceptional small businesses that we’ve worked with the previous year,” says Carol Lopucki, State Director of the MI-SBTDC. “We are excited to celebrate their successes.”When Don Aldrich and Chuck Thomas found out that the company they had worked at for over 18 years was on the brink of closing, they weren’t sure what to do. They knew that the Cadillac-based culvert manufacturing company was either going to close its doors or be bought out, so they took a chance and decided to be the ones to purchase the company. MI-SBTDC consultant Annie Shetler happened to be visiting the Cadillac Chamber of Commerce when Aldrich and Thomas stopped by to inquire about the steps necessary to purchase the company. Shetler heard the duo explaining their situation and immediately offered her assistance. Together they worked to develop a viable professional business plan and prepared to buy out the company.

Aldrich and Thomas were able to open Cadillac Culvert on May 10, 2012. They retained seven full time employees upon opening and have added three more since then. Cadillac Culvert currently sells their products to government agencies, private companies and the general public. They are constantly working on expanding their customer base throughout Michigan, and are in the process of launching a second spin-off company.

For more information about Cadillac Culvert visit:

The Michigan Small Business & Technology Development Center provides counseling, business education, information based planning and technology commercialization to new and existing businesses throughout Michigan’s 83 counties.The MI-SBTDC is located at the Grand Valley State University, Seidman College of Business in Grand Rapids, Michigan. As host of the MI-SBTDC State Headquarters, the Seidman College of Business oversees the eleven-region MI-SBTDC network. Entrepreneurs and small business owners may access the services of their nearest MI-SBTDC by calling 616.331.7480 or visiting

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