Lea’s Floral Shop
Unicorns may be imaginary, but when they’re made of flowers, the sentiments are very real. Lea’s Floral Shop owner Mary Lechliter-King and her team craft highly personalized floral arrangements in shapes from mythical animals to musical instruments, in addition to their traditional bouquets. Located in East McKeesport, Pennsylvania, the business has remained in the family for four generations and continues to blossom with help from their KeyBank team.
To offset the impact of the pandemic on her small business, Mary needed help securing Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) assistance from the federal government. In April of 2021, her challenges were compounded when a fire ravaged her family’s store, destroying 90% of the inventory. The 62-year-old family business needed to rebuild from scratch.
“We really needed the money to maintain our payroll until our business could recover from the pandemic. They make me feel like a celebrity, always asking me what they can do to help.” – Mary Lechliter-King, Owner, Lea’s Floral Shop
Mary’s business banking team at KeyBank not only walked her through the complex PPP assistance loan application process ... when the time came, they helped guide her through the loan forgiveness process. “We really needed the money to maintain our payroll until our business could recover from the pandemic,” says Mary. Excited to reopen soon in a new location, Mary smiles, “They make me feel like a celebrity, always asking me what they can do to help.”
Thanks to her PPP assistance loan and KeyBank’s guidance, Mary was able to hold onto her entire staff which was especially critical following the fire when her business moved into the local community center. “Believe it or not, we only had to shut down business for one day,” Mary says. “We were back to full capacity in no time.” Looking ahead, Mary and family are excited about their new building that will be larger, staff more employees and offer a more diverse line of gift items. Mary sums it up: “It’s all about creating an experience that better serves our customers. That’s what separates our floral shop from all others.” Likewise, she believes that same approach to customer care is what makes KeyBank such a rare breed ... a lot like, say ... a unicorn.