SBDC Hall of Fame

Robert Swigonski

Robert Swigonski

Robert Swigonski
Swigonski Management Group
Mohawk Valley SBDC

Robert Swigonski's curiosity about the SBDC and his lifelong desire to own a restaurant led to his ownership of several Denny's and Bennigan's restaurant franchises. His grandmother owned a deli in Brooklyn.  While taking electrical engineering classes at SUNYIT in Utica, Bob passed the SBDC office on his way to and from class. One day he stopped in to talk about starting a business, and SBDC provided information that eventually changed his life forever.

While conducting research into franchising, Bob realized that he needed financial partners to make his dream a reality. He identified five individuals and with their pooled resources, created Six Star Group, Inc. This was the winning formula that would lead to the Bob's success. In the next seven years he and his partners opened four additional Denny's restaurants, each with its own corporate investment group. The experience gained with the Denny's franchises inspired the client to pursue a similar opportunity with Bennigan's restaurants. The successful formula used for Denny's locations, in particular the business plan developed with SBDC assistance, resulted in the successful financing and opening of three Bennigan's restaurants. The client and his partners have created 650 jobs and have an annual payroll of more than $5,500,000.

Bob consulted with the SBDC several times between 1994 and the present for assistance with business planning and financial projections. He emphasizes the importance of efficient time management and the selection of good business partners such as the SBDC to his success. He also stresses property management as a key growth strategy for leveraging financing.