Grossman Tours Springfield Salon Aided Through Loan Program
Bellucci Relocates With Help From The Small Business Banking Partnership
From left to right: The co- owners of the business - Silver and Maria Serra, Massachusetts State Treasurer Steven Grossman,
William Wagner, President of Chicopee Savings, and Mayor Domenic J. Sarno.
State Treasurer Steven Grossman took part in a tour of Bellucci Salon & Day Spa in Springfield today. Bellucci is the recipient of a loan made by Chicopee Savings Bank leveraged through the Treasury’s Small Business Banking Partnership (SBBP). The financing helped facilitate the recent relocation of the business.
“Bellucci Salon & Day Spa is exactly the type of place we strive to help with our Small Business Banking Partnership,” said Treasurer Steven Grossman. “In communities all across Massachusetts we are seeing small local businesses grow as a result of this program. I was delighted to learn about the growth Bellucci has realized because of their recent move.”
The Small Business Banking Partnership moves Treasury cash reserve funds typically held by large national and international financial institutions and deposits them in amounts of up to $10 million in Massachusetts community banks. In exchange for the infusion of new deposits, the banks sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signaling their intent to enhance their loan portfolios to small credit-worthy Massachusetts businesses. Treasury has deposited $293 million in 50 community banks statewide, which has helped leverage over 3,200 small business loans totaling $477 million.
Maureen Bellucci opened the salon & spa in 1985 and still works there today. In 2007, she sold her business to then-manager, Maria Serra. Maria now runs Bellucci with her husband and business partner, Silver Serra. The Serras continue to honor the integrity and high standards that have been the salon’s hallmark for the past 27 years. Growing their business was the goal behind the recent move. The new location provides increased visibility to commuters along Route 83 while allowing convenient parking options for their guests.
“This move made sense for us,” said Maria Serra, Owner of the Bellucci Salon & Day Spa. “We were able to stay close to our old location, while still remaining in Springfield, and Chicopee Savings made the whole process a pleasure.”
With assistance from Springfield’s Office of Planning and Economic Development, Serra was able to visually transform the look of the new location. The formerly whitewashed industrial façade now boasts an elegant and welcoming business front.
The lender, Chicopee Savings Bank, is a publicly traded community bank with deep roots in Hampden County. The bank opened in 1854 and has 9 locations in Western Massachusetts. The bank’s relationship with Maria began when she acquired Bellucci in 2007 and it played a major role in the recent relocation of Bellucci. As a result of the second round of financing, Bellucci relocated, added one employee to its staff of 23, and anticipates hiring again in the near future as it continues to grow.
“We are very grateful to both Chicopee Savings and the SBBP for giving us this opportunity,” said Serra. “Programs like these can have a real impact on local businesses here in Springfield.”
“Chicopee Savings is pleased to participate in the SBBP program initiated in May 2011 by State Treasurer Steven Grossman, and we were the first local lender in Western Mass to receive $5 million in state reserve funds as part of this new initiative,” said Bill Wagner, President & CEO of Chicopee Savings Bank. “This partnership between Massachusetts lenders and the Commonwealth is vital to the success of our small businesses operating here in Massachusetts.”
All deposits that the Treasury makes in these local community banks are protected through either insurance or collateral, and the interest rate on the money is comparable to what the Commonwealth receives at out-of-state financial institutions.