|The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) will kick off National Small Business Week (NSBW) next week. For more than 50 years, the weeklong event has recognized the critical contributions of America’s entrepreneurs and small business owners to the local and national economies. And, this year is unlike any other – as America’s small businesses continue to face unique challenges brought on by the coronavirus pandemic.
Here in South Carolina, small businesses (defined as companies with fewer than 500 employees) are a critical component of the economy, accounting for more than 99% of all private employers in South Carolina. Additionally, more than 43% of all South Carolina employees work for small-sized firms.
Small businesses have taken a hit over the last 18 months. And now, more than ever, it’s imperative to support the local shops and companies that make up the backbone of the state’s economy.
South Carolina’s small business community also consists of some of the state’s most innovative, forward-thinking companies – organizations working on emerging technologies that create disruptive change.
Earlier today, S.C. Commerce, in partnership with the South Carolina Jobs-Economic Development Authority (JEDA) and 3Phase, announced the launch of the state’s first match funding program for Phase II of SBA Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) grants. SBIR and STTR grants are a common first funding source for startups and small businesses to commercialize new, innovative products and services.
Small business is big business in South Carolina. These companies boost prosperity and the overall well-being of South Carolinians. So, during National Small Business Week – and the weeks beyond – support the entrepreneurs and smaller organizations that promote a more vibrant, prosperous community for all.