Salt Lake City
Food truck success leads to brick-and-mortar restaurant
The Utah SBA 2019 Growth Award will be presented to Maize Tacos, owned and operated by Brian Noguera, during the National Small Business Week Awards ceremony May 9 in Salt Lake City. This award recognizes the incredible growth that Maize has posted through the past year, marking an increase of 78 percent in net sales and a 70 percent boost in total transactions.
Noguera credits his parents with his strong work ethic. “The will to be successful has always been strong since my parents immigrated to the U.S. 20-plus years ago,” he said.
After graduating and working in the corporate world for a bit, Noguera knew he wanted to start his own family business.
“We have more than five years of working our tail off in the food truck business. That’s where we have constantly strived to improve every single day. The learning and growth has come from long hours in the food truck business and now we’re turning a page and expanding into our first brick-and-mortar restaurant,” Noguera said.
When they wanted to grow, they were able to apply for and secure a small business loan guaranteed by the Small Business Administration (SBA) 7(a) Loan Guarantee program. The program is one of the most popular offered by the agency and is the basic SBA loan program. A 7(a) loan guarantee is provided to lenders to make them more willing to lend money to small businesses.
“The biggest challenge has been financial growth and the SBA has bridged that gap for us to fulfill our dream of opening up our first brick-and-mortar. We can continue working on the food trucks and having success, but taking it to the next level with a new restaurant and all the expense that goes into that couldn’t be possible without the SBA,” he said.
Noguera’s advice? “Believe, persevere and don’t stop the grind until you get to where you want to go,” he said. “My favorite aspect about being a business owner is the simple fact that I control my own destiny — and that’s a beautiful thing. I’m also creating work and jobs for others,” he said.
Maize (pronounced ma-eeze) is a food truck in Salt Lake City that specializes in bringing authentic tacos to the streets. The food truck creates traditional tacos on fresh handmade corn tortillas. Noguera’s new restaurant is located on Regent Street in downtown Salt Lake City.