Orlando Baking Small Business
From left (Front) John Kropf, president, Growth Capital Corp. Certified Development Corp.; Linda McMahon, administrator for the S.B.A.; (Back) John Orlando, Orlando Baking, Gil Goldberg, S.B.A. Cleveland District Director, Sonny Orlando, Orlando Baking. 

CLEVELAND — Orlando Baking Co. recently completed a major plant expansion supported by a nearly $3 million U.S. Small Business Administration (S.B.A.)-guaranteed loan. The plant is in a historically-underutilized business zone, also known as a HUBZone, which helped it acquire the funding.

The program helps small businesses in urban and rural communities gain access to federal procurement opportunities, such as loans. To be eligible for the program, companies must meet standards that include employing less than 500 employees; being owned and controlled by at least 51% by U.S. citizens; having a principle office located in a HUBZone with 35% of employees residing in the area.

Linda McMahon, administrator of the S.B.A., recently took a tour of the Cleveland-based operation getting an insider’s look at plant operations and sampling the bakery’s new products.

Known for its signature ciabatta bread, Orlando Baking creates more than 250 varieties of fresh baked products that are provided to some 4,000 customers primarily in the Midwest.