The Illinois Small Business Development Center at ICNC is Proud to Support America's Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs) as They Celebrate 40 Years of Helping Businesses "Think BIG & Start Small."
For 40 years the America’s Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Network has helped aspiring and emerging small business owners achieve the American dream of entrepreneurship. This March SBDCs from around the country are coming together for one special day to celebrate their work, impact and most importantly their clients – America’s small businesses.
With nearly 1,000 locations across the country, SBDCs provide local businesses and entrepreneurs with the resources needed to succeed. In 2018, America’s SBDC clients experienced annual sales growth of 17.7% almost 4.5 times more than the national average. SBDC assistance resulted in 99,194 jobs created; $7 billion in sales growth; $5.6 billion in capital investments; and 16,499 new businesses started.
SBDCs have also supported small business in ways beyond business development. SBDCs are key partners in disaster recovery, working with SBA, FEMA, and State agencies to improve resiliency and speed recovery in disaster-stricken communities. Whether it is flooding, hurricanes, earthquakes or wildfires you will find SBDCs staffing the Business Recovery Centers and reestablishing communities. In addition, you’ll find SBDCs helping with cybersecurity, hosting rural development conferences, and teaching opioid awareness. All the things that make SBDCs the leader in small business assistance.
To celebrate the collective impact and success SBDCs have across the nation and in local communities each year, America’s SBDCs are hosting the fourth annual SBDC Day on March 18th. SBDC Day is a national movement to help share the small business success stories and notable impact SBDCs have fostered in communities nationwide.
“SBDC clients give their SBDCs 4.4 out of 5 stars and 93% of SBDC clients recommend their SBDCs to other small businesses. With 40 years of expertise, proven ROI and stellar client ratings it’s clear that America’s SBDCs are the nation’s most trusted small business resource.” said Charles “Tee” Rowe, President & CEO of America’s SBDC.
As a thriving light manufacturing, mixed-use incubator, ICNC has about 100 small businesses that benefit from access to our on-site SBDC and ITC centers. Through the resources and tools of the Network and its partnership with numerous organizations, including our local Chicago SBA office, SBDC Director, Merly Thomas, continues to provide our businesses with much needed 1:1 business advising to guide clients through various stages of business needs. Additionally, our ITC directed by Enrique Rubio, is also accessible for clients that are ready to consider exporting their goods or products to global markets.
One of the many small businesses assisted by the Illinois SBDC at ICNC was Victus Ars, a tenant at our Make City incubator. After a rigorous incubator application process, the company moved in and was immediately connected with multiple resources to help them grow financially as well as professionally. This includes learning about city services and workforce development options for the growing company. Additionally, President Michelle Fame of Victus Ars says, “Merly goes above and beyond to connect us to events and resources - most recently the Chicago Women Mentoring Co-op. This highly selective mentoring program through Chicago Innovation Awards chose our lab manager out of 150 women to be in the 50 member cohort.”
America’s SBDC network is a partnership that includes the U.S. Congress, SBA, the private sector, and the colleges, universities and state governments that manage SBDCs across the nation. SBDCs provide management and technical assistance to an estimated one million small business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs each year. Small business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs can go to their local SBDCs for free, face-to-face business consulting and at-cost training on writing business plans, accessing capital, marketing, regulatory compliance, international trade and more.
Small businesses, partners, and advocates are invited to help spread the word about SBDC Day using the hashtag #SBDCDay and our anniversary hashtag #SBDCsCelebrate40. On March 18th, participants are encouraged to share how their local SBDC has created a difference in their life and community. SBDCs nationwide will collectively share, in real time, the success stories and notable impacts SBDCs collectively have on the small business community at large. This special day will also be celebrated through public relations initiates, campaigns, and online and in-person events. Learn more at www.AmericasSBDC.org/SBDCDay.