Celebrating the Entrepreneurial Spirit: Farm Supply Store in Barnesville, Georgia
Whether you’re a serious full-time farmer or have a hobby farm, you must check out the Farm Supply Store located on Highway 341 in Barnesville. Jason and Annette Governo, along with their great team of employees, are ready to help you find whatever you’re looking for, from new lawnmowers to feed and seed, tools and baby chickens.
The Farm Supply Store opened in its new location in March 2021, but the business informally began years ago when Jason took a chance on eBay®.
Jason attended UGA and earned two degrees in engineering. Upon graduation, he stayed on to work for the UGA School of Engineering for 10 years, where his position depended solely on funding and grant awards. With a young family to support, he was determined to find a more grounded, reliable career that wasn’t dependent upon the whims and politics of state funding.
While attending a trade show, he met a fencing distributor and struck up a conversation about his products. Intrigued with e-commerce sales, Jason offered to sell his new friend’s fencing products through eBay, and an informal partnership began.
“I still remember my excitement when I received notification of my first sale,” Jason shared. “It was a $45 transaction, and I made $20 on it. It made my day.”
The eBay test drive was so successful Jason soon outpaced the inventory supply of the company. He eventually purchased the business, renamed it Farm Supply Store, expanded its offerings and opened a Barnesville warehouse location. In 2013, the warehouse morphed into a retail store for customer convenience.
The staff is a big part of the store’s success. Nikki runs the front of the store and provides personal advice on raising chickens. Eric and his team in the back manage the parts inventory and sales. Jason empowers each employee with a sense of ownership in their section.
“We work to live, not live to work.” Jason shares that familiar phrase as he talks about his team and the relationships they share. He believes that family comes first, and his own children can be found often in the store; daughter Leah helps out regularly after school.
Even with the company’s new retail store in full swing, Jason still enjoys the ecommerce component of the business. In fact, every single product available in the store is available online through the store’s website, farmsupplystore.com, and the online fence store at FieldGuardian.com. His eyes get large and his smile widens as he talks about the software program he found to connect all of his business components, ensuring succinct inventory management and proper archiving of customer transactions for future purchases of replacement parts, whether instore or online.
Jason and Annette recently called upon their United Bank lender, Cameron Scott, to refinance an existing business loan, and sought the unique structure and benefits of the SBA 504 loan. Government loans can be rather complex, and Jason had previous experience with this type of loan.
“Cameron made a challenging process as simple as it could be,” he said. “He managed as many of the steps as he could for me, and because of his efforts, it’s the best experience I’ve had with an SBA loan.”
We thank Jason and Annette for allowing United Bank to be a part of this journey as their financial partner, and for being our very first SBA 504 borrower. Congratulations for a great first year in your new location!
This feature is a part of our 2022 issue of Our Story. See the full issue to read other stories about the entrepreneurial spirit of today's business owners.