“We went from a 5,000 square foot warehouse to a 13,000 square foot warehouse within 6 months after the Opportunity Fund loan.”
— Ike, Zyclefix
As Ike grew his bicycle brand, one of his biggest challenges was keeping up with the demand. A $45,000 loan from Opportunity Fund helped him maintain his worldwide distribution of products.
A Road Block to Business Financing
Ike Solano has been an entrepreneur for over 20 years. When he started bicycle brand Zyclefix in South El Monte, California in 2011, he had 19 years of experience in the shoe business. Once he switched gears to distributing bikes, Ike found a new set of challenges even as business was booming.
“Our biggest obstacle was trying to fulfill orders, so we needed the capital to purchase inventory,” he said. “The lead time between manufacturing and delivery is very long. We would receive our product, sell it, get paid, and then reorder more inventory, but it was just taking too long without extra capital.”
Ike looked for funding through the usual small business channels, including banks, Small Business Association loans, even his own personal credit. None of these options were right for Zyclefix, and that’s where Opportunity Fund fit in.
Ike found Opportunity Fund via a one-two punch: a Google search and an outreach letter from his eventual loan officer, Adrianna Williams.
“It’s difficult to find financing without an organization like Opportunity Fund,” Ike said. “Before, we were told our business history wasn’t long enough or our business wasn’t big enough. Adrianna was able to help us and the entire process was very easy and pleasant.”
Thanks to the $45,000 loan that Adriana negotiated for Ike, Zyclefix has been able to keep up their worldwide distribution of products, including bikes, skateboards, and accessories—and to introduce some new products like hover boards and motorized scooters.
The Path to Success
The loan helped Zyclefix solve its inventory problem. It may have worked too well, because the inventory grew so quickly that Zyclefix needed to move into a bigger warehouse to store and stock all the new parts and bikes they purchased with the loan.
“We went from a 5,000 square foot warehouse to a 13,000 square foot warehouse within 6 months after the Opportunity Fund loan,” Ike said.
Since working with Opportunity Fund, Ike has grown Zyclefix to include a wider range of bicycles featuring high quality and accessible prices, like beach cruisers, road bikes, and aluminum trap bicycles. This growth has allowed Zyclefix to embrace a niche market of bikes and build it into a mainstream brand.
Ike highly recommends Opportunity Fund to small business owners in need of financing, and he will definitely call on us again if he needs easy-to-get, fast, and affordable funding to support the next phase of Zyclefix.