Michelle Antone Leaves Career as Financial Professional to Become Entrepreneur
Michelle Antone (Cheyenne River Sioux) is celebrating her first year as owner of Edible Arrangements, a shop that offers hand-cut and chocolate dipped fruit bouquets and fresh fruit smoothies in Rapid City, South Dakota. Although she has encountered several bumps in the road, she says her best move was securing start-up capital through Four Bands Community Fund.
After a long and successful career as a finance professional, Michelle decided to begin a new venture as an entrepreneur. She says that although there are benefits of deciding your own destiny, starting a business has been anything but easy. She admits there have been many challenges along the way. However, she is glad that securing capital wasn’t one of them.
She says, “Four Bands was really a life saver. They set me above what I needed to be as far as being financially stable.”
For Michelle, it was the “easy-to-do-business-with” factor that drew her to Four Bands when she was seeking start-up capital for her business. “They definitely made the whole application process easier, walked me through it, and helped me prepare the financial plans,” she says.
As a result of opening and thriving, Edible Arrangements has created approximately 10 jobs for local residents. Michelle says that on average 50% of her employees are Native American.