What kind of clients come to EGBI? Client feature: Teresa Valenzuela-Basa

By Al Lopez, February 26, 2013

The diversity of our clients is an element that makes our experience here at EGBI especially interesting and rewarding. At one end of the spectrum, we have folks who don’t yet have a specific business but feel that sometime in the future they will start a business. At the other end, we have clients who already have a business developing, but have reached a point where they realize they really need and want to have a more formal business plan, such was the case of Teresa Valenzuela-Basa.

Teresa arrived in the United States in 1991 as a refugee from Chile. Her passion for art, color, and fashion led to an initial career in jewelry design, which has evolved into a creation of a full line of fashion. Teresa’s strong commitment to her community and heritage inspired her to work with a Chilean Foundation which aims to preserve the colorful art form of horse hair weaving while helping women to become financially independent. Her community involvement includes volunteering at Safeplace, an Austin based nonprofit that empowers women living under family violence.

Teresa is currently in our noon cohort of Building Success Program (BSP). We have covered business topics such as business plan, personal finances/credit, budgeting, pricing, legal structures, taxes and insurance among other. Coming up are sessions on marketing, branding, and using social media for your business. The BSP culminates with each client, including Teresa, presenting a brief summary of their business plan to the class members and the EGBI staff.

Teresa’s designs have been featured at the Texas Campaign for the Environment, Austin Fashion Week, and the 2012 Texas Emmy Awards. She is periodically featured in Univision’s Despierta Austin providing fashion tips. Her first fashion debut, Vento e Sole, takes place on Sunday, March 17th at Ballet Austin. The event benefits Safeplace and Ballet Austin. Tickets can be purchased here.

It is particularly exciting when we see collaboration among our clients. In this case, our client Sugar Fashionista is participating in Teresa’s Vento e Sole event providing their fabulous desserts. We are proud of them, Teresa and other small business owners who call EGBI their “base of support” and look forward to continuing to help them sustain and grow their businesses.

If your current situation is similar to Teresa’s, and you are ready to take your small business to the next level, come to EGBI. Check out our website, sign up for our entrepreneurial training sessions beginning in April and attend our great workshop series in March.

Latina Fashion Designer, Teresa Valenzuela-Basa currently enrolled in EGBI’s Building Success Program

“EGBI is providing guidance and training to enable my business to grow steadily and with solid roots. Their professional team is full of resources and they are dedicated to ensuring small businesses succeed. The support of EGBI is reassuring to business owners. As a fashion designer, I can count on their guidance to surround my company with professionals who are instrumental for running a business in an ethical, productive, effective and efficient manner.”  Teresa Valenzuela-Basa