Mary’s Pizza Shack
“[The] team at SBDC are so amazing and quick to respond to all our questions. We were considering letting go of both restaurants until we had a chance to speak to you and your team. Your willingness to always communicate with us gave us hope during the darkest times of our career. We will never forget the amazing speed and professionalism that you graced us with.”
Dozens of jobs were saved and COVID-19 economic injury loans obtained because of a successful collaboration between the owners of a longtime, family pizza joint and the SBDC.
Mary’s Pizza Shack has been family-owned since 1959. It’s a small chain of restaurants and Mary’s grandson, Charles Byerly owns a couple of them with his wife, Kathy. One restaurant is in Redding and the other is in Anderson, CA.
When the pandemic hit in 2020, and the governor of California closed the restaurants, Charles and Kathy were faced with the prospect of months with no income. This, combined with a heartfelt responsibility for their 20 full time and 44 part time employees, caused them a great deal of concern.
A friend recommended they meet with the Shasta-Cascade SBDC. They took the advice and were soon under the wing of a lead advisor. The advisor helped the couple with the ins and outs of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program, while they focused on pivoting from dine-in food to converting their parking lots to a drive-up and carry out model.
The teamwork with the SBDC paid off. Charles and Kathy were able to obtain financing totaling over $1M. They pivoted and kept operations going (as allowed) through the pandemic. Today, they continue to serve up the delicious pizzas and past dishes based on the old recipes. They were able to save dozens of their employees’ jobs and they remain a well-known and beloved fixture in the community.