Engineering and Planning Resources, P.C. (EPR)
Bonita Player. Great name. And what a great businesswoman. Starting in her house in 2004, EPR has grown into their own suite of offices in Pensacola and does business throughout the Southeast.
In between then and now Bonita located her company at Co:Lab for four years. “Co:Lab came at a time when I needed it. My business was at the point that if it didn’t grow it would stagnate. Co:Lab helped me make that jump,” explained Bonita. To grow EPR Bonita realized she needed help and direction. “I wanted to learn the actual mechanics of running a business and I needed specific support with accounting, and the staff and mentors provided that help. I was being guided by people that had been there before.”
“Another advantage of being at Co:Lab was just being around other business people that were growing and struggling with similar issues. We’d talk, interact, give and seek advice – basically we learned from each other. It was all very instrumental to the growth of my company.”
EPR is a civil and multimodal transportation engineering and planning firm. At one point 80% of its business was in the private sector and, unfortunately, in the years following the recession things were not as healthy for EPR. That’s when a mentor at Co:Lab helped Bonita evaluate her business and redirect company resources to pursuing business in the public sector. This was a big move that has paid off for Bonita and EPR.
Being at Co:Lab also helped EPR company save money. Bonita saw that operating her company out of her home was becoming expensive and inefficient. Relocating to Co:Lab actually reduced her overhead…and saved her time. She no longer had to drive to the print shop to make copies, and rather than run all over town for client meetings the Co:Lab provided Bonita with a professional conference room where her clients could come to her. And now when Bonita was home she was home…as a wife and mother. Not having her company under that roof allowed her to shut work down each day.
EPR doubled its business the first 18 months there and has continued to grow, increasing by 30% since graduating from Co:Lab. “Did Co:Lab live up to my expectations? Yes, it sure did.”