Banks, Credit Unions, Micro-lenders, Certified Development Companies, and Technical Assistance Providers Participated
SAN FRANCISCO – On May 7, 2013, the San Francisco Small Business Administration District Office hosted a vibrant two hour “Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month Lender Roundtable” in their downtown office in San Francisco. May is AAPI Heritage Month, and SBA is marking the occasion with a variety of local events.
Although about 30% of the population in the Bay Area is AAPI only 8.5% of the clients being severed by our Small Business Development Centers in the Bay area are AAPI entrepreneurs. Due to culture, language and a variety of other barriers, most of the AAPI population is not fully using government provided resources in obtaining capital and business counseling.
Participants joined hosts District Director and acting Regional Administrator Mark Quinn and Deputy District Director and Director of AAPI Outreach Tong Qin for presentations and a lender panel discussion on how to provide more assistance to the AAPI small businesses through outreach, training and lending.
Jane Gong, Project Manager at the San Francisco Office of Small Business made a presentation on San Francisco city resources available to the AAPI community and the San Francisco business community in general.
Paula Groves Services Director of the Alameda County Small Business Development Center (SBDC) presented on the technical assistance options available to all Bay Area entrepreneurs, and specifically for Mandarin speakers in San Francisco.
Deputy District Director Qin moderated a panel of SBA lenders who have succeeded in banking the AAPI business community, including Rich Grant from TMC Financing, Victor Hsi from Southeast Asian Community Center, and Mark Raffield from Wells Fargo.
“As an immigrant to America from China myself, I understand the challenges faced by first generation AAPIs in navigating a new system and a new society.” Deputy District Director Qin said. “I think we made a positive step today in continuing the discussion about how the lender community can empower the AAPI community at every level to reach their full potential and live the American Dream.”
The San Francisco SBA District Office covers Alameda, Contra Costa, Del Norte, Humboldt, Lake, Marin, Mendocino, Napa, San Francisco San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Solano, and Sonoma Counties. In Fiscal Year 2012, the District guaranteed over 1,500 small business loans valued at $807 million. 125 banks, credit unions and community lenders participated in this program. Annually, the San Francisco District Office cohosts over 1,000 training events for over 50,000 Bay Area small businesses or prospective businesses from SBA resource partners.
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