Established in 2010, Gulf Seafood Market is known for its wide variety of fresh coastal seafood. Owned and operated by Josephval Luan and managed by his wife Magdalen Thang Zam Luan in Metro Birmingham, Alabama, customers know when they step into the market, they are getting high-quality seafood. The husband-and-wife duo have even been known to offer to prepare and cook delicious dishes for customers to take home to enjoy.
My business is everything to me, so I was very stressed out when my landlord decided not to renew my lease and sold the builder to developers. I was scrambling to find a new location and more importantly get my financing straight. Josephval Luan, owner of Gulf Seafood Market
So, when the landlord of the building they had been occupying in Homewood, Alabama, for more than 12 years informed them that the building would be sold, the couple needed to find another location – and quickly.
Enter Peter Huang, Commercial Banking Solutions business development associate for Regions.
“I was connected with Mr. Luan through a contact with the Birmingham Chinese Business Association, where I am an active member,” Huang said. “Mr. Luan told me that he has been in business for 12 years at the same location, but recently his landlord has decided not to renew his lease and would be selling the property to investors for a new construction project.”
Luan knew he had limited time to find a new building, but he was hesitant about signing another lease. So, he decided to purchase a building rather than renting.
He was able to find a building in nearby Center Point, Alabama, that fits his needs but was not in a position for conventional lending options. Huang connected Luan with Jerry Hammonds, a Small Business Administration (SBA) Lending relationship manager at Regions. The Regions team was able to close Luan’s loan quickly and prior to his lease expiration in his former location.
“Jerry and the SBA team were able to successfully close the loan quickly, allowing Luan to transition his business to the new location without major disruptions or shutdown,” explained Huang, who remains a key piece of the relationship with the Luan family.
“Seeing the impact on local families when we can help make a difference for them and their business is so rewarding,” Huang shared.
It proved just as rewarding to the Luans.
“Seeing the impact on local families when we can help make a difference for them and their business is so rewarding.” Peter Huang, Commercial Banking Solutions business development associate
“My business is everything to me, so I was very stressed out when my landlord decided not to renew my lease and sold the builder to developers,” Mr. Luan said. “I was scrambling to find a new location and more importantly get my financing straight.
“I’m thankful for the relationship with my Regions bankers for making this financing process transparent and easy to understand. It is one less thing to stress about when I know that my bankers are taking care of my financial needs, so I can focus more on my business.”
The new building has been undergoing renovations since the purchase, and Gulf Seafood Market is scheduled for its grand re-opening by the end of the month.