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Rheinlander Bakery Success Story

Ed Dimner started glazing doughnuts in his parent’s bakery at the age of nine. The Dimner family started Rheinlander’s German Bakery in 1963 and Ed and his twin brother helped in the shop throughout their childhood growing alongside the bakery. Ed’s parents retired in the mid-1980s while Ed was still in College. After graduation Ed considered his options and realized that he really wanted to go back in the baking business by re-opening in the same location and building he grew up with. Ed brought his parents out of retirement to assist him in re-opening and bought the bakery building and living quarters from them to make a complete investment in his future.

Owning the entire building, the business had living quarters above the bakery, which is where Ed and his wife Maro, still live today. Ed met his wife Maro at CU and they were married a little more than a year later. Maro was from Cypress and the original plan was for Ed to follow her as she developed her career, but then a change of heart happened as she decided the bakery business was more exciting so they jumped head first into Rheinlander Bakery.

The business began at somewhat of a slow pace during the first years of operation. Ed has always structured the business so that his employees were well compensated, which proved to be an asset and sound building format for future growth. Ed jokingly commented that the employees made more than they did in the early years, but the investment has proved to be beneficial in the overall growth of the business. Over the past years Rheinlander has experienced various levels of help from several organizations as well as the City of Arvada. Ed’s background in chemistry has played a significant role in the continued growth of the business. Documented formulizations for all the bakery products complimented by a unique product offering and the dedication and cross-training of employees, has afforded the bakery to not only develop a strong brand image, but also, a very strong and loyal customer base.

As with any successful business, planning for retirement eventually enters the picture. Being a family owned business and with no children, Ed and Maro decided to eventually sell the business to one of their key employees who has been with them for many years. Never having planned for this type of transition, they contacted the SBDC for advice and guidance. Working with an SBDC Consultant who was experienced in ownership transitioning, they developed an Operational Strategic Plan and a solid Exit Strategy that created a win-win opportunity for everyone. Working with the SBDC Consultant, Ed and Maro combined their years of industry experience along with a strong business financial background to develop a road map for the business, themselves and the new owner. The SBDC brought in the Manufacturers Edge Program, which enable the business to improve and enhance existing programs as well as initiate new ones. The SBDC process included an anonymous employee survey and a three (3) day offsite Strategic Planning Session used to proactively identify concerns and opportunities and implement Action Plans for future growth. Ed and Maro plan to remain semi-active in the business until full retirement to assist the new owner with the transition as well as continuing to use the resources provided by the SBDC.

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