Cassidy Flower Co.
A Christian County farm that began adding commercial elements last year opened Cassidy Flower Co. LLC on Feb. 10. The flower shop at 5176 N. Fremont Road in Nixa is on the city limits of Ozark, where the Cassidy Station development opened in December 2022 with a mercantile shop. Kyle and Hollie Estes are behind the Cassidy Station project, with the flower shop considered to be a Phase II initiative. The Esteses hired Lauren Lindsay, who has experience as a florist with Fleur Floral Studio LLC in Springfield, as Cassidy Flower Co.’s shop manager. Lindsay said she is one of two employees, and the store provides delivery within a 15-mile radius. Arrangements available for delivery begin at $40, premade options for in-store purchase start at $10, and individual stems range $1-$10, she said, adding antique vases priced $5-$50 also are available. Cassidy Station also recently opened one of its event spaces with more expected to launch this summer, Lindsay said.
The Social Studio
A former CrossFit instructor became a first-time business owner with the Jan. 21 launch of The Social Studio LLC in Republic. The venture, dubbed by owner Becky DeMaria as a family-friendly selfie studio, is at 141 W. State Highway 174 in the RepMO Corner shopping center. DeMaria said startup costs were $8,000, but she declined to disclose the rate of the one-year lease she signed with RepMO Corner LLC. DeMaria is the lone employee at the 700-square-foot studio, which offers 11 photography setups that change with the season and holidays. Currently open by appointment, The Social Studio offers ring lights, tripods and selfie sticks for visitors to take photos with their own cameras or smartphones. A standard ticket is $18.50 per person for a 30-minute session. Photographers can also rent the space for photo shoots, and the facility is available for private rentals with prices ranging $110-$225. DeMaria said she worked at CrossFit Republic LLC before starting The Social Studio.
Higginbotham Insurance Agency Inc.
Local firm Connell Insurance Inc. entered a merger with Fort Worth, Texas-based Higginbotham Insurance Agency Inc., effective Oct. 31. Financial terms were undisclosed. Tom Jensen, a partner with Connell Insurance, said the firm will be branded as Higginbotham Insurance and Financial Services. Jensen, Casey Chastain, Jay Hickman and Chase Marable, the local firm’s leaders, were named Higginbotham managing directors in the deal. Higginbotham officials say the company sought out a partner to begin business in the Show-Me State, noting it previously established offices in bordering states. Connell Insurance, which had 38 employees across two offices in Springfield and Branson at the time of the deal, has since grown to a staff of 43, Jensen said. A property and casualty insurance and employee benefits brokerage firm, Connell Insurance was established in 1970.
Springfield Business Journal’s 2023 Trusted Advisers event honors 20 businesspeople.