National Small Business Week - KULR-8 Television, Billings, MT

National Small Business Week

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National Small Business Week encourages the pioneering, self-starting spirit in small communities.

And with so many small businesses growing in Yellowstone County, it's keeping the local economy going, and creating jobs. Yellowstone County has around 13,000 businesses, including start-up phases and second stages of businesses. Tina Wu's restaurant, the Golden Phoenix, has been established in Billings for 10 years. The Wu's wanted to bring a different twist of Asian culture to Billings, something they say the Magic City seemed to lack.

"In Billings here we need some restaurants like that because all the Chinese restaurants are pretty much like similar and the same kind of food," says Wu.

They then opened up the Asian Sea Grill, and by expanding their business to gain a liquor license, they created the Shore Lounge.

"Not any Asian or Chinese restaurant owned a liquor license. So and I think maybe we needed one like that," says Wu.

Big Sky EDA Small Business Center Director Rebecca Hedegaard says businesses like the Wu's help to drive the economy by bringing in new business, and by expanding their own business.

"Existing ones are all expanding, they're growing they're moving forward with what they already have and taking that to the next level," says Hedegaard.

Hedegaard says the small business community in Billings will only continue to grow.

"The business community really supports each other. They really want to keep local dollars here and they want to continue to see that thrive," says Hedegaard.

The Wu's also hope to expand their three locations into a fourth. They plan to install a Japanese hibachi grill next door to the Shore Lounge and Asian Sea Grill.