From starting out in a Chevy Tahoe in Estes Park to running a full-service equestrian facility servicing northern Colorado and beyond, Front Range Equine Performance and Rehabilitation is the epitome of business success. With a little over seven years under their belt, its grown from a single-person operation to nine employees, working across veterinarian and rehabilitation services, human resources, and office management.  

We sat down with the Front Range Equine team to learn more about how owner, Dr. Marianne Marshall-Gibson sets the tone for aspiring entrepreneurs and pushes the needle forward for business expansion.

1. Briefly describe your business (what does it provide, who does it serve, etc.)

We are a specialty equine sports medicine and rehabilitation veterinary clinic. We provide ambulatory and on-site lameness, diagnostic imaging (X-ray, ultrasound), state-of-the-art regenerative treatments, chiropractic, acupuncture, and rehabilitation services to the northern Colorado front range, Steamboat Springs and Southern Wyoming.

2. How did the business start, and how is it going today?

Dr. Marshall-Gibson started the practice as a solo practitioner in her parent’s garage in Estes Park, CO in 2017. At the time, she worked out of her parent’s Chevy Tahoe to provide ambulatory sports medicine, chiropractic, and acupuncture services to the northern Colorado front range and Steamboat Springs. Since then, the practice has grown to two full-time veterinarians, six technicians, one office manager, and three fully stocked ambulatory trucks. In 2021, we purchased an equestrian facility and turned it into a full-service equine rehabilitation facility. In May 2023, we added an above-ground water treadmill, solarium, and many other state-of-the-art rehabilitation tools to expand our rehabilitation and conditioning offerings.

3. What makes your business unique or sets you apart from competitors?

We are the only specialty private practice in Colorado owned and operated by a board-certified Equine Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Sports Medicine & Rehabilitation (ACVSMR), the highest level of expertise in lameness and rehabilitation a veterinarian can achieve.

4. What is your proudest achievement as a business owner or leader? 

One of our proudest achievements is bringing our dream into reality. Over seven years, we have gone from a single vet, operating out of the back of a Tahoe, to a multi-vet practice with a professional support staff dedicated to providing elite quality, patient-focused equine veterinary sports medicine and rehabilitation. This was not previously available in Colorado.

5. Describe a challenge the business faced and how you overcame it.

One of the biggest challenges was finding the right property to expand into our rehabilitation facility. FirstBank was instrumental in allowing us to purchase the property, move forward with our business expansion, and continue with our vision.

6. What do you think are the most important skills/considerations for running a successful business? What advice would you give aspiring entrepreneurs?

Write down your vision, mission, values, and goals at the beginning of every project and reference them frequently to ensure you and your business stay on track. As the company grows or changes, update these things with any new directions and make them accessible to your current and future employees. The best way to achieve your business goals is to have them clearly defined and accessible to everyone, including your customers. You can use them to hire a team of people who align with your business goals and want to help the company succeed.

7. Why did you choose FirstBank as your banking partner?

We chose FirstBank because of their excellent customer service and advice when expanding our business. They believe in our vision of providing the best equine sports medicine and rehabilitation services to Colorado and the Rocky Mountain Region.

8. How has your FirstBank relationship helped with your business goals?

Their belief in our business vision, mission, and values allowed us to purchase a physical location and key equipment, including our water treadmill. The ability to make these large purchases enable our team to offer the highest level of care and expertise of any veterinary rehabilitation facility in the Rocky Mountain Region.

9. What do you hope to see the business accomplish in the next several years?

We hope to expand our rehabilitation and haul-in facility to provide more on-site specialty sports medicine, post-surgical lay-up, injury rehabilitation, and conditioning services to the horses of Colorado, Wyoming and beyond.

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