The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and the National Association of Government Guaranteed Lenders (NAGGL) today released a ready-to-use Business Smart Toolkit that equips faith-based and community organizations with tools and workshops to help new and aspiring entrepreneurs launch and build credit-ready businesses.
“We can’t wait for aspiring entrepreneurs to come to us; we need to reach out to them where they are,” said SBA Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet. “The Business Smart Toolkit allows us to work more effectively alongside local partners in underserved communities to ensure that all Americans have access to the government and private resources available to support their entrepreneurial dreams. Minority firms are a fast growing segment of the U.S. economy, generating $1 trillion in economic output, yet they typically encounter higher borrowing costs, receive smaller loans and face more rejections. I applaud NAGGL for joining the SBA to focus on expanding lending to underserved communities to ensure that all key drivers of the U.S. economy are able to contribute at their full potential.”
“Small business ownership takes courage and determination. We must promote and inspire entrepreneurship and the Business Smart Toolkit is an innovative way to bring the highest-level of business insight to American entrepreneurs across the country,” said Tony Wilkinson, president and CEO of NAGGL. “Our partnership with the SBA unites our expertise and resources. Together, we hope this toolkit will inspire Main Street entrepreneurs to open their doors.”
The toolkit is designed to train the trainer, such as trusted community leaders who have the ability and the desire to educate new and potential business owners through a series of workshops in collaboration with the SBA’s field offices and NAGGL members. The toolkit is intended to educate and enable small business owners – from those looking to open their first small business, to established business owners hoping to expand and grow. It contains a variety of small business and financial literacy topics that include business start-up basics, the essentials of becoming credit-ready, and resources for small business education and support. Download the Business Smart Toolkit here.