The number of new business licenses issued around Cherokee County in the month of May is up slightly from April but down from last year.
In May, 101 new businesses decided to try riding the wave of economic recovery moving through north Georgia and were issued licenses around Cherokee County. That number is down from the 124 business licenses issued in May 2012 but up from the 95 licenses handed out in the county in April.
Though the numbers are down from last year, some local business leaders, such as Dennis Burnette, president and CEO of Cherokee Bank, say that overall, the economy is still clearly on a path to recovery.
Burnette said with the economy slowly mending, fewer businesses are shutting down, and fewer may be opening as a result. He added that more businesses staying open means more jobs and thus fewer people looking to “make money on their own.”
Lewis Cline, senior vice president of Bank of North Georgia, agreed Friday that on the whole, the economic climate is better than it was several years ago.
“The overall trend in new business licenses issued is one of stability with a 12-month average of small increases,” Cline said.
Several of the new businesses filing for licenses in May were stores like Bass, Van Heusen and Tommy Hilfiger, which will be opening at the Outlet Shoppes of Atlanta in Woodstock. Cline said he expects there will be a “spike in the next two months” with the other stores in the outlet applying for licenses.
Cline said Cherokee County is positioned well for more growth in addition to the Outlet Shoppes of Atlanta.
“Cherokee County still offers a prime location for new business owners looking to move to our county, expand existing locations, or opening an overall new business venture,” he said.
One Cherokee County man trying to take advantage of the county’s strengths is Mike Clark, 33, of Holly Springs.
But Clark’s business in Woodstock, MC Signs & Graphics, isn’t new to Cherokee County.
Clark originally opened his professional graphics firm in 2003 in Holly Springs.
The business had five employees and enjoyed a loaded list of clients, including many local small businesses and Cherokee County government.
But in 2010, Clark said business came “almost to a screeching halt.”
“Businesses are my business,” and many were shutting their doors, Clark said.
Clark said he decided to close the shop down before business could get any worse.
“I didn’t want it to get to that point where I was having to file bankruptcy,” he said. “I just decided ‘I’m not going to let it kill me.’”
Clark said he went to work for a friend’s company, but kept close tabs on the economy, waiting for the right time to go back into business for himself.
Now, with reports steadily coming in that the economy is recovering, Clark said “It just felt like the timing was right” to try again.
And he said so far, things have been good.
“I left my business in very good standing, I didn’t owe anybody any money (when I closed down),” he said. “So when it came time to (open again), it was a really easy transition.”
As for the results, Clark said business has been “fantastic” since he opened up his shop on Parkside Lane in May. He’s taken on many of the same clients and has been, once again, making money off of his “passion” for designing signs, car graphics and logos.
It’s good, he said “to have that freedom again.”
In addition to MC Signs & Graphics, the following businesses also received business licenses in Cherokee County in May:
Barry’s Auto Sales, LLC
Around Atlanta Fence
Alicia Robinson Cooper
Cherokee Connections, Inc.
Fetch ‘n Groom
Ironclad Security Services, Inc.
M & K Premier Auto Brokers, LLC
Doctor Pool, LLC
Atlanta Bonded Warehouse Corporation
Jeff Bryan Consulting, LLC
Cinderella Maids Service, LLC
Julian Rojas Painting and Remodeling
Pear Tree Photography
Expert Appliance Repair and Service
Dogwood Growlers, LLC
United Resource Group
Don Hester Farms
Old FiveKee Inc
Theris Consulting Group, LLC
Mary Beth Fest
Ellen Paige Ballard
Mark Highsmith Quality Lawn Care
RPM Photography, LLC
Gantt Therapeutic Vision, LLC
Able Environmental, Inc.
Mike Jenks Homes
Felix Auto Repair
Capabilities Therapy Services, LLC
Phoenix Valet Services Incorporated
Atlanta Specialty Vehicles, Inc.
V.I.P. Mobile Car Wash
Heritage Property Inspections
Allstate Network Entertainment, Inc.
Simmons Custom Homes, INC
Latino Services NO. 5, LLC
S.R. Bailey Imports
Stephanie Christ Support Services
Hunter Performance Contractors, Inc.
EM Carpet Cleaning
H & R Transport
On the Go Nutrition, LLC
One Source Counseling and Employee Assistance Services, LLC
Transforming Power, LLC
DCM Lawn & Yard
NG Auto, Inc.
Soluciones Inmigratorias LLC
Narrow Path Productions
Annointed Healing, LLC
Zedi International, LLC
Faith Path, LLC
Crossfit Breaking Boundaries
JP Hair Dues
Knock “N” Nichols Cleaning
Ranger Construction GW, Inc.
Trilogy Event Services, LLC
GA Neurobehavioral Assoc., LLC
Allison C.Doerr, PHD, PC
Reformation Brewery, LLC
Rejuvenate Massage Studio, LLC
First Avenue Tile, LLC
Piedmont Medical Care Corporation
Barrel and Barley, LLC
Atlanta Communities Real Estate Brokerage, LLC
Tsunami Wave Woodstock, LLC
Data Forms & Out Sourcing, Inc.
Sherwin Lee Photography
Oliver & Whitfield, LLC
Herrig Holdings, LLC
BBQ 92, Inc.
Platte River Insurance Company
Waleska and Nelson issued no new business licenses.