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Columbia, SC Exporter Recognized By SBA

John Wilkinson
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

  A few years ago, we first featured our next guest on this program when he told us about the success his company was having in helping small businesses export their products to Europe by offering them partial shipping container space.  Just recently those efforts were recognized nationally when the US Small Business Administration named them the South Carolina Small Business Exporter of the Year.

Mike Switzer interviews John Wilkinson, chief operating officer for USA eShop, based in Columbia, SC.

After almost 20 years, Mike Switzer retired from Wells Fargo Securities in 2001 as Senior Vice President/Investment Officer and Certified Portfolio Manager. In 1999, he and his wife, Maggie, purchased and operated for eight years the Baskin Robbins ice cream store on Forest Drive in Columbia. They grew the store from a bottom-tier operation in the Baskin Robbins franchise system to one in the top 5% nationwide within three years, tripling sales along the way. While operating the ice cream store, Mike and Maggie received patents for a portable ice cream sink and fold-down sneezeguard they invented and in 2002 started Magnolia Carts, an ice cream cart manufacturing company, which they sold in 2013.