The Small Business Administrator (SBA) has announced the opening of five new Women’s Business Centers (WBCs).
On May 23, Isabella Casillas Guzman, head of the SBA, announced the selection of the new resource centres for women entrepreneurs and business owners. The announcement was made during National Small Business Week.
Access to the right resources plays a huge role in small business success, especially for women entrepreneurs who can still face barriers when starting and running a small business.
The SBA’s WBCs provide free to low-cost counseling and training for women who want to start, grow and expand their small business. As well as business training and counseling, WBCs provide federal contracts and access to credit and capital.
Helping Women Overcome Business Hurdles
By expanding its network of WBCs throughout the US, the SBA will help more women overcome obstacles, with the aim of “levelling the playing field” in the business world.
Administrator Guzman spoke of the importance of providing women with the right resources to help them grow and succeed in business.
“Under the leadership of the Biden-Harris Administration, our nation has seen a historic small business boom with 2021 new business applications 20% higher than any year on record.
“And women – especially women of color – continue to lead the way with the highest startup rates. The SBA is committed to creating inclusive entrepreneurial support ecosystems so that any of our new – as well as our established – women entrepreneurs can successfully pursue their American dreams of starting, growing and building resilient businesses. And with SBA’s opening of five new Women’s Business Centers at Minority Serving Institutions across our country, we can help improve outcomes so they can do what they do best – create jobs, power our economy, and build a better America through entrepreneurship,” Guzman continued.
Hosted by MSIs
The five new WBCs will be operated by established Minority Serving Institutions (MSI) that serve minority populations.
The new centers hosted by MSIs include California State University, Frenso Foundation, CSU Fullerton Auxiliary Services Corporation on behalf of California State University, Fullerton, Miles College Center for Economic and Social Justice, the National Institute of Minority Economic Development, Inc. on behalf of Bennett College, and the Rockville Economic Development on behalf of Bowie State University.
Since March 2021, 25 new Women’s Business Centers have opened. The following year, the Office of Women’s Business Ownership (OWBO), which aims to empower women entrepreneurs through advocacy, outreach, education, and support, announced the expansion of its national WBC network to all 50 states and Puerto Rico after it launched its 141st WBC in Anchorage, Alaska.
Providing Technical Assistance to Women Entrepreneurs
The selected MSI WBCs will support technical assistance to women entrepreneurs. They will also assist emerging entrepreneurs with planning, development, as well as providing support in accessing capital.
Outreach services and activities, including training, workshops, and information dissemination to MSI students, will be provided at the new WBCs.
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