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Businesses Compete for “Made in the South” Awards

South Carolina Business Review
SC Public Radio

Each year our next guest’s magazine holds a contest for southern crafted products in several different categories. While the overall winning business receives a $10,000 prize, a much bigger reward is the publicity that follows and the resulting boom in sales. But the deadline to enter is fast approaching.

Mike Switzer interviews Elizabeth Hutchison, a contributing editor for Garden and Gun magazine in Charleston, SC, host of the 12th annual Made in the South Awards program.

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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.