Over the past 18 months the Florida SBDC at FIU Business (FSBDC) has helped more than 3,000 local businesses in Miami-Dade and Monroe Counties survive the COVID-19 pandemic and continue on the path to growth.
Throughout 2020 and until September 2021, the organization has secured $141 million in capital and $89.2 million in government contracts for its clients, which number 3,170. The FSBDC also helped launch 116 new businesses in the midst of the pandemic. Before COVID-19, the FSBDC worked with, on average, 1,100 clients per year.
“I am extremely proud of our team’s efforts to go above and beyond to help local businesses impacted by the pandemic,” said Brian Van Hook, FSBDC regional director. “As trusted advisors, we want to see businesses not just survive COVID-19 but come out stronger.”
Since many business owners lack the business acumen or experience to launch a new venture, handle rapid business growth or unexpected business interruptions, the FSBDC provides hands-on assistance and groundwork.
Throughout the pandemic, the FSBDC has worked hand-in-hand with local businesses to help them weather the situation and pivot to the economy post-COVID-19. Consultants are seeing increased demand for guidance on financial management, business strategy and retaining and recruiting employees.
Consultants guide applicants to the best resources for them, explain the eligibility criteria, assist with applications, walk them through the review process, determine how to put the funds to their best use and ensure they have the right plan to be successful.
To keep up with growing client demand, the FSBDC secured additional funding to add 10 consultants since last year. Since 2020 the organization has held 115 training events with a total of 6,626 attendees and provided 35,000 overall consulting hours.
The FSBDC began offering services in Miami-Dade County in 2014 and expanded to Monroe County in October 2018.
Since its launch, the FSBDC at FIU Business has helped launch more than 315 businesses and assisted local entrepreneurs and small business owners in creating or retaining 19,072 jobs; generating $1.33 billion in increased sales; acquiring $219.3 million in government contracts; and accessing $312.4 million in capital via loans and equity investments.
Resources available for small businesses: