Monsterslayer of Kirtland and Aztec Machine and Repair of Bloomfield were among 10 small businesses chosen for the first class of the New Mexico Economic Gardening Pilot Program.
"We're excited to offer the opportunity for these 10 New Mexico small businesses to take advantage of customized business counseling so they can grow their businesses and create jobs in their communities," Beverlee McClure, president and chief executive of the Association of Commerce and Industry, said in a prepared statement.
The association also chose five Albuquerque businesses and three Las Cruces firms for the pilot program.
Eligible companies must have between eight and 99 full-time employees, generate between $500,000 and $50 million in annual revenue and have added employees or grown in revenue during at least two of the past five years.
Businesses chosen for the program were in a wide variety of industries.
Monsterslayer was founded in 1987 by Jacque Foutz and her late husband, John. They also ran 550 Caf and 550 Grocery from the same place at 4187 U.S. Highway 550 before getting into the jewelry business.
Monsterslayer sells jewelry supplies its best-selling item is 20-gauge sterling silver round wire. Foutz offers a $1.50 table of beads to lure customers to her shop, but the vast majority of her business now comes through a website, monsterslayer.com.
"Ninety percent of our business is online," Foutz said. "We sell to the world from Kirtland, New Mexico."
Foutz's son, Joey, runs the website. They applied for the business counseling program after seeing a previous article in The Daily Times. Joey Foutz said he hopes the program helps Monsterslayer learn "where to focus our energies."
"There are only so many hours in the day, and we can't do it all," he said.
Besides the Foutzes, Monsterslayer has nine employees, all of whom are Native Americans. While the company has grown, Jacque Foutz hasn't hired more employees recently. "Even though we're growing, we're more efficient," she said.
She hopes the business counseling program can help Monsterslayer grow.
"It would be good to hire more people and help the economy," she said.
Aztec Machine and Repair was founded in 1997. The company won an Economic Development Growth and Excellence Award in 2007. It recently moved to 1715 N. First St. in Bloomfield.
Aztec Machine and Repair has 22 employees. The company specializes in hydraulic and industrial repair, and equipping field trucks.
Owner Tim Montoya said the ACI is conducting a market analysis on behalf of Aztec Machine and Repair to look at competitors and analyze his business' customer base. He also wants to look at the market for certain services.
"It seemed like something that could help us out with what we're trying to do," he said.
Four Corners Economic Development Inc., based in Farmington, and the city of Las Cruces are partners in the pilot program. Sponsors include Public Service Company of New Mexico, Lovelace Health System, the Edward Lowe Foundation and the National Center for Economic Gardening.