North Coast SBDC


“Working with SBDC was great. Although I do have some business knowledge from helping my father’s food business, the business center really solidified my thoughts on how a business should be run.”

All Client Stories


Obento was conceived while two friends, Maya and Shin, frequently hung out, sharing stories of their mutual experiences growing up with healthy, affordable Japanese food they each made in their homes, and brainstorming about bringing this joyful, wholesome experience to the community they now called home.

Then, one day, the conversation shifted from “What If” to “Why Not”? Obento was born.


Obento began to take shape just as the pandemic was forcing closures. The Obento team worked with their SBDC consultant to evaluate their options, refine their business plan, and ultimately pivot into a new business model. 


Maya and Shin stayed open-minded and resourceful, shifting from a pre-order, office delivery model to a space in The Depot on the Cal Poly Humboldt Campus. 


Shifting to a location where students, faculty and staff are walking by all day was a huge boost to their growth! They attribute their success in large part to this captive foot traffic their current location provides.