Family business attributes success to community

Collaborator: Brian Hesson
Published: 11/16/2020, 6:43 PM
Edited: 03/11/2021, 10:22 AM
(ALLEN, Texas) Squeegees owner Ella Bassett told VNN she and her husband started a screen-printing business 20 years ago so they could be there for their two daughters more. “And that worked out for us,” Bassett said. “I wanted to know who my kids were, their friends were, and my coach, their teams, both of us coach all of their teams. And it just got us an opportunity to live in a community that we were a part of. And I also got a chance to meet a lot of their friends. So that's the main reason I started. It was because of family.” Increased cases of COVID-19 have hammered small business owners like the Bassett’s across Texas. “It hurt our business,” Bassett said. “I've had to lay off one or two employees, but we're managing to come to. What has helped a lot is our online orders. What we miss is people coming in. This is a small community and a lot of people like to come in, feel, touch and see the product. Not everyone is online shopper.” Being a Black business owner has its own unique set of challenges, particularly in a predominantly white community. “When we first started, we were young and in the community,” Bassett said. “So, a lot of people knew us. We coach several teams. We volunteer coach. We do. We've done a lot of things like that.” She said that involvement in the community has also been a blessing to their business. “People saw us as friends, not as business owners,” Bassett said. “Especially when you're minority-owned. You have to really prove yourself before they actually want to do business with you. They'll go somewhere online rather than shopping. Allen. But, you know, for the most part, the city has been supportive.” Bassett said despite the journey having its fair share of challenges, they’ve been able to stay in business for two decades. “So, that's a good thing,” Bassett said. To learn more about Squeegee’s, visit This has been a VNN sponsored news story. For more information, email


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