WILLIAMSPORT, LYCOMING COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — A young business owner opened a barbershop right before the start of the pandemic, and despite some hurdles, he’s managed to thrive. And now, he’s even looking to expand.

Many small businesses failed throughout the pandemic. But the barbershop on West 4th street is quite the opposite. The young owner says it hasn’t been easy but hard work definitely pays off

Spencer Newman isn’t your typical 23-year-old. He’s the owner of Epiq Styles Barbershop.

“I started the barbershop when I was 20 years old so I’ve been open for 3 years now,” says Newman.

Originally from Long Island, Newman moved to Lewisburg in grade school. He decided to become a business owner after he got his barber license, but he’s had a passion for cuts and styling since he was a teen.

“I was pretty young. I was a junior in high school at the time. So I just kind of cut my friend’s hair in my parent’s bathroom and did that sort of thing to try to get a little bit of experience,” says Newman.

He opened the shop just before the pandemic hit and had to close for a few months, but luckily, it survived.

“For the first 3 years I didn’t have anyone working for me it was just me cutting hair. Just taking appointments by myself and I just became so busy that I couldn’t do everything myself so I ended up hiring a walk-in guy to help me out,” says Newman.

Newman says his business is still growing but finding people to work is another challenge. He’s hoping to hire more employees to keep up with the demand.

“Now I’m trying to expand to more. You know maybe have 5 to 6 chairs in here and have a lot of walk-in business coming in,” explains Newman.

Newman says he’s grateful to have a profession he loves and appreciates all the continued support from the community. He’s doing so well, he’s even opened a convenience store right next door to the shop.