Entrepreneur Social Club at DTSP restaurant Souzou Fusion St. Pete | When your credit is sleeping with the fishes

When your credit is sleeping with the fishes

When your credit is sleeping with the fishes

It’s Thursday night in Downtown St. Petersburg, Florida! The weather here could have been playing a major factor in our decision making. Luckily for the west coast of Florida, Hurricane Matthew stayed just east of the east coast, sparing Florida much of its deadly potential. Many many homes and businesses elsewhere were trashed and flooded. Ugg. We feel for those who were affected and send them our love and support. Thursday also means it time for us Entrepreneurs, Business Owners, Start-Ups, Dreamers, Students, and Wizened Mentors to gather for our weekly Entrepreneur Social Club (ESC) meeting.  It’s most always at my beautiful event venue NOVA 535, except tonight NOVA 535 is booked for a wedding. So the ESC is off site, back again at the well gorgeous modern sushi restaurant, Souzou.  2016-10-06-esc-at-dtsp-restaurant-souzou-194832

Souzou is located at 435 5th Avenue North, St. Pete, just around the corner from NOVA. Tonight’s weather uncertainty certainly kept many people home. (Lazy!) The 20ish of us that did attend had lots of laughs, a productive meeting, a delicious dinner, then we ended up at an after hours house party on the lake. No photos allowed after 10 pm, sorry kids; that’s the rules. And so, why did we name this story “When your credit is sleeping with the fishes”? It’s a short, scaly  tale, har-har, so read on!


After explaining the (other) rules to our newcomers, NO NO NO religion, politics, liars, bullies, thieves nor racists, we passed around our business cards. Vanessa, our fabulous and attentive waitress,  brought us our first round of wine and apps, which included the yummy DTSP Sushi roll. DTSP = DownTown St. Pete. Funny enough, I do own a web company DowntownStPete.com. We feature the BEST LOCAL DTSP events, things to do, places to go and interesting personalities that make it all happen. So of course I pimped out the DTSP roll, ya know on Instagram and onto our DTSP Downtown NOW photo wall. If you live, work or play here in DTSP, create a profile , be a part of our growing online community, and stay updated with the best LOCAL things to do! If not, then why aren’t you living in one of the world’s best cities??


Tonight we discussed borrowing money, credit scores, banking and that whole mess. John Pereira is opening new credit repair business bigdreamscredit.com. He says his services will average $99/month and take typically 6-8 months to get your credit cleaned up. He gave out a stat: “example of a 30 year fixed rate of $200,000: the difference between 500 score (your rate = 9.67%)  to a 760 score (your rate = 5.9%). That is a HUGE difference in your total interest paid over the life of your loan. So maybe a credit repair company could be helpful to you….do the math and make sure to read the fine print. Some of us got knocked around by the fair weathered banks during the Great Crash. We wondered what we can do when your credit is sleeping with the fishes. When the banks say NO to lending you money, what else can you do?

2016-10-06-esc-business-cards When your credit is sleeping with the fishes

We asked,  What options are available to Entrepreneurs to borrow money?

Family and Friends. We stated the obvious, that networking is extremely important to building your company, for fundraising and soliciting customers. Friends and family can always gift / loan you $$, plus buy from and refer you to others. But ALWAYS keep business as business. Get EVERYTHING in WRITING.

Credit Cards. Smartest use, if at all (I have no credit cards post crash – we use cash (debit) only) is to use the (teaser) 0% interest for XX months…works fine IF you are careful and NEVER miss a payment.

Line of Credit.  Collateralized by your Assets, so if you don’t pay then say goodbye to those assets.

Crowdfunding. This is relatively new, and certainly a wave of the future. To be successful you (the person asking for $$) need an emotional connection to your potential “lenders”. There are GoFundMe, Indiegogo, and many many more.

Micoloans, and lending clubs, like KIVA.org and tisbest.org were mentioned.

Suppliers. Nick “TheFlavorcrate.com” Mazeika smartly mentioned you can Get “Credit” from your suppliers; get a better rate based on larger orders and agreeing to longer committments – by looking at this relationship over a longer period of time. Even 5-10% saved can really positively affect your bottom line!

Also notes is Omaze https://omaze.com/ , a charitable fundraising with a twist. Smart stuff!

2016-10-06-esc-at-dtsp-restaurant-souzou-203743 When your credit is sleeping with the fishes

And if you don’t know me yet? I’m Michael S. Novilla (who enjoyed the delicious tuna steak and broccoli picture above…mmmm!!!) founder of NOVA 535 Unique Event Space, ESC, DowntownStPete.com, StPeteMuralTour.com. Plus I’ve reated and host (with lots of help and support!) amazing annual events like Novaween.com and NovaNoel.com, our annual ESC / NOVA / DTSP Holiday Party. Novaween is fast approaching, only 2 weeks away; Friday October 21, 2016! Get your Novaween tickets now online (save a few $$ also) for our 10th Annual Adults Only Halloween Costume Party.  Most of the ESC members have been, year after year (thanks for your support!!) and for those newbies, get your baby/pet sitter and call uber, it’s time to PARTY!

Novaween 10 at DTSP venue NOVA 535 Friday October 21, 2016

Friday October 21, 2016 returns St. Pete’s Favorite Halloween Party Novaween number 10!

My pal, and fellow Entrepreneur Audrey, who is an Artist, Yoga Instructor, Painter and Social Media Creator and Promoter, AudreyJennifer.com gave us her take on tonight. “Souzou once again provided a divine atmosphere for the group to meet and bond over delicious Asian cuisine and wine as we discussed vital topics such as credit options and email marketing barrier solutions. John Pereira owner of BigDreamsCredit.com offered valuable insight into the obstacles that poor credit can provide any entrepreneur, as well as the solutions he provides to vital credit improvement. Nearly every person in the group was able to relate to some sort of credit-related struggles, so this discussion was lively and John’s insight was valuable. 


(more from Audrey) Beyond that, Scott Olipra of InfusionsoftNinjas.com  (bottom right, above) proposed information regarding recent changes to Google email configurations that undoubtedly impact a business’ marketing efforts. The group was surprised to receive the new information he provided, but it was another valuable addition to the discussion that virtually (no pun intended) everyone could appreciate. We had a lively discussion at a great venue tonight that each member of the group enjoyed and benefited greatly from. We’re grateful for the laughs, inspiration, motivation, and challenges provided and look forward to the next week!”

Gina Tracy of iQbranding.com was back with us tonight! Always delightful to spend time with Gina. Looking for a new or refreshed brand? Talk to Gina!


the lovely Kathi Harris founder of  Hat-a-Tude


Arthur Gueli, one of our always great to hang with regulars, of InjuryClaimCoach.com, somehow missed the after party this time. Arthur??


Newcomers Annie Grace of AnnieGraceInk.com, along with Matthew Osborn, working for global powerhouse Jabil, we welcome you both!! Annie’s other passion is the 0-5 year old home goods world. We hope to see you both back for more ESC.  Jabil, by the way, does several delightful events at NOVA 535, so here’s a big THANK YOU to Jabil!

2016-10-06-esc-at-dtsp-restaurant-souzou-185607 When your credit is sleeping with the fishes

(below bottom left, white and grey plaid shirt) Tony teaches people to listen to their intuition, facilitating like minded ideas and using that to help others. Also how to be more productive – use lists, pomodoro – on for 25 minutes on 5 minutes off and so on. Welcome back Tony, thanks for sharing. Next to Tony in the blue and white stripes is Keith Widmer of AcclaimPlastics.com welcome back Keith – see you at Novaween!

2016-10-06-esc-at-dtsp-restaurant-souzou-194808 When your credit is sleeping with the fishes

Scott Olipra (above far right, purple short sleved shirt)  MailerCertification.com helps improve your email deliverability. Scott and I worked together this week and I’m confident that his time and expertise is MOST valuable to all of us using email. Below is newcomer Brian Schaaf, looking good and eating well.  Brian works with Justin Petro fixing anything with wires. Welcome to the ESC!


Delightful newcomer Courtney Young, with still celebrating birthday boy Justin Petro, our Mr. Fix Anything With Wires. He’s a lifesaver and can be found via AdvancedMillennium.Net Welcome to our group Courtney, hope to see you soon!

2016-10-06-esc-at-dtsp-restaurant-souzou-205117 When your credit is sleeping with the fishes

Christine Fasan foudner K9Holistics.com who is a fabulous dog trainer, and provides excellent pet care, and is hilarious and always so much fun to spend time with.

2016-10-06-esc-at-dtsp-restaurant-souzou-205139 When your credit is sleeping with the fishes

We do this every Thursday Night since 2009! Join us for networking, learning, growing – both yourself AND your business, all in a business casual environment, one without religion politics bullies liars and thieves. Check for the exact ESC location here. Remember that it’s the world’s Entrepreneurs that are solving our problems, making things better, safer, faster, healthier and more enjoyable.

Loading Facebook Comments ...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *