First-time entrepreneurs Hillary Dube and Ross Rivkin relocated to Inverness, Florida from Connecticut and launched their business, HNR Gunworks, all at the same time. After vacationing in Florida to visit a friend, Hillary and Ross fell in love with the small town feel and friendly atmosphere that Inverness has to offer. With little hands on business experience but a ton of passion for the firearms industry and custom gunsmithing, Hillary and Ross took the leap of faith and started looking for a location which lead them to quickly signing a lease and opening their doors in February 2017.
This dynamic duo’s quick entry into business has given them an advantage in that their company is the only full-service machine shop in Citrus County resulting in extensive gunsmithing services. Like many other first-time business owners, Hillary and Ross have learned through trial and error. To help themselves be successful more quickly and to avoid other roadblocks, they’ve sought out people who have been in business before and started talking with them. In addition, business resource agencies such as the SCORE mentor network have helped Hillary and Ross gain more perspective on being entrepreneurs and the plethora of different hats you will be wearing as the owner.
Hillary encourages anyone considering entrepreneurship to understand “you need to make a plan and be willing to jump in. Don’t always be a bystander otherwise you’ll always be standing by.” Further, Hillary shares “be involved in your community because it helps you network and makes your community better, which means your business will do better.” A motivating quote Hillary refers to often is “first they will make fun of you, then they will ask you how you did it.”