We are scheduled for our pre-move visit starting July 22. We have a list of places to visit to find out what the islands upholstery needs are. We would appreciate for those that follow this forum site to suggest additional businesses that we should speak with. Also I have reached out to the Division of Corporations and Trademarks and have not received a reply. Is there a specific person we can contact so we can have a personal meeting while on the island?
Corporations and Trademarks is all automated now.
The phone numbers are at the bottom of the page.
I'm not sure why you'd want to go there though, its all pretty straight forward.
The 'needs' are 90% private customers IMHO. Re-USE in Bovoni is a consignment shop that might utilize you commercially on occasion or as an outlet for your finished product.
Your best use of time here on a PMV is to assess the Island Life in general -- rental possibilities - home, business or combined, prices on food and household goods, shipping options for your supplies, location scouting for the kind of traffic you are appealing to, vehicle decision info, fabrics suited for this climate research, banking and postal info and seeing how to initially publicize your venture locally.
Perhaps visit the canvas shops that cater to the boats ,awning,cushion business if that is a direction you are considering.
Anticipate an expensive! and time consuming!! start up -- co-ordinate your shipping needs, both initial and continuing -- You will not be producing income on Day Two of living here - make sure you have the capital to survive for a few months.
Good Luck - the PMV is an important time to evaluate the decision to commit - keep an open mind and a realistic attitude.
I think Exit Zero has some good advice.
What kind of info were you looking for from Division of Corporations and Trademarks? They have moved to an online system for most things now. It actually is a luxury even if the site is a little cumbersome. Dealing the local government offices is usually a challenge in patience. I have a couple of contacts in Division of Corporations and Trademarks but I don't know if they would be able to help you without knowing what kind of info you are seeking.
We have read through the information about obtaining a USVI business license and just feel that actually talking face to face with someone would help us be more directional in our approach. We are exploring many options in our plan development right now and when we get to the island we are hoping to narrow our scope. For example do we develop a rolling shop to go where needed, do we have a fixed location, can we opperate out of our home. Currently our upholstery shop is in a pole barn on our property and people bring their boats and furniture to us, but maybe that process will not work on the island and we may need to think out of the box.
The goal is to find out what it takes to open a business on the island when we are moving to the island. We have an EIN number for Michigan but do believe that we will need to resubmit once we move. This is all about "inquiring minds want to know" the process so we are not making a lot of missteps.
For sure you should avoid bringing customers into your house for security reasons. So setting up a shop in your house is the least desirable option. I would also not suggest mobile business given flakiness of the population. You may get exposed to a lot of people not showing up for appointment while you wasting your time and gas moving your truck to locations. There is plenty of commercial space available for rent.
The quality of services here is much lower that on mainland and there is little competition. From that perspective your type of business should be successful here
I'm with Alana on this one. You would be best served by hooking up with a service that helps you through the process. It's worth every penny and they tend to be a lot more helpful with questions than most anyone you find at the local government/agencies. I've used Nancy before and was pleased. There are also a number of other people who do similar services.