Exact Match Masonry Staining Named 2016 Eastern Pennsylvania Minority-Owned Small Business of the Year
“It’s wonderful to have the privilege to recognize the achievements of leading minority-owned Pennsylvania small businesses like Exact Match Masonry Staining, LLC,” said Antonio (Tony) Leta, U.S. SBA Eastern Pennsylvania Director. “Small businesses like Exact Match Masonry are where the rubber meets the road, helping drive our nation’s economic recovery and create jobs. SBA and our lending and resource partners, like Kutztown SBDC, are proud to play a role in helping them start and succeed.”
Exact Match is a niche masonry and expert custom coatings application business. When clients struggle to match building additions, repaired areas, correct graffiti damage or face other color problems, the firm reverse-engineers custom colors for masonry and mortar to create an exact match which transforms or matches the color of brick, block, mortar, stone, concrete, Cast Stone, retaining wall systems and stucco. Jennifer, with her husband and Vice-president Matthew, worked with a team of chemists to perfect, test and expand their product line.
While there is a great deal of science behind the unique design of Exact Match’s exclusively developed products, the process itself is more of an art, requiring extensive training, perfect color discernment and experience with a variety of applications and surfaces. Jennifer has developed and marketed the problem-solving services and proprietary products to an ever-growing, nationwide network of architects, builders, masons, manufacturers, property management and property owners who rely on their services on a regular basis.
The daughter of a U.S. Navy Vietnam veteran and his Asian wife, Jennifer was born near Chicago and grew up in Central Pennsylvania. Jennifer’s background and the history of her Asian grandparents, hardworking store owners who fled Communist China in 1949, give her a unique appreciation for free enterprise and hard work.
The deep construction recession was a huge challenge to the company just as they were launching their new business in 2007, so they turned to SBA resource partners for guidance and assistance. Exact Match Masonry received business counseling with SCORE from 2007 to 2009 and SBDC consulting assistance encompassing business planning, financial statement analysis and projections, marketing research, woman’s business certification and export assistance from 2009 to the present.
“The advice and counseling we received from the SBDC was absolutely instrumental in overcoming numerous obstacles as we grew and new challenges arose,” Jennifer Gill said. “Even now, as I make my many important business management decisions from day to day, I am encouraged to know that my SBDC team stands ready to offer continued guidance and support ongoing.”
Pictured above, left to right: PA’s Secretary of Community and Economic Development Dennis Davin, Matthew Gill- VP Operations, Jennifer Gill-President, Antonio Leta, Director of the U.S. Small Business Administration Eastern PA District. Exact Match Masonry Staining, LLC is introduced as Minority-Owned Business of the Year Eastern PA District 2016.
“I was very pleased to nominate Ms. Jennifer Gill for the prestigious SBA Small Business Person of the Year Award for 2016. Along with the Shippensburg and Bucknell SBDCs, the Kutztown University SBDC has worked with Exact Match for almost 8 years, assisting the company with business planning, financial projections, market research, woman-owned business certification and exporting to three countries,” said nominator Martin Brill, Program Manager, International Trade, Kutztown Small Business Development Center.
“Jennifer has successfully balanced marketing, website development and maintenance, customer prospecting, customer support, billing and financial management with home schooling for the family’s 5 children. In addition to working with the SBDC, Jennifer has worked with SCORE and SEDA-COG on trade matters and has enlisted an active advisory board for guidance as necessary,” Brill said.
When Exact Match makes a proposal, their goal is to offer a maintenance-free cure, and as such, the company holds a record of 100% success rate for the projects they accept. The firm’s projects are covered by a 30-year limited warranty, and their products have been ASTM lab tested to weather through UV and Freeze-Thaw exposure for upwards of 50 years without any evidence of fading or color change. Colors and formulations are carefully engineered on site, matched for each project’s needs by Jennifer’s technical team, led by Matthew, himself, a nationally recognized masonry color expert. The firm is in demand nationwide for their expertise and success rate for even the most challenging mismatches or custom requests and receives word-of-mouth referrals from satisfied clients from New England to Southern California.
The company has been honored annually with platinum, gold and silver level safety awards from masonry industry groups like the The Cast Stone Institute, and The Pennsylvania Concrete Masonry Association, of which Jennifer is serving her second, three-year term on the Board of Directors and as Promotions and Sustainability Chair Woman. Matthew is also the company’s Safety Officer, and ensures that their forces are all OSHA 10-Trained and have clearances to enter even the highest security facilities in the U.S.