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Owner of Delaware's Oldest Printer is 2013 SBA "Small Business Person of the Year for Delaware

Release Number: 
Advisory Date: 
Wednesday, April 24, 2013
Jennifer Pilcher | 302-573-6294, ext. 222 | 302-573-6294, ext. 222



WILMINGTON, DEL. – SBA’s Delaware Acting District Director John Fleming will officially introduce the agency’s Delaware Small Business Person of the Year, Coleman E. (“Corky”) Bye III, President and Owner of The Mercantile Press, Inc., at the firm’s Wilmington, Del. headquarters on April 29 at 10 a.m. The event is open to media.


WHO:       John Fleming, Acting Director, U.S. SBA Delaware District Office

                 Andrew Dinsmore, Projects Manager, Senator Chris Coons


WHAT:      Coleman E. (“Corky”) Bye introduced as SBA’s Small Business

                 Person of the Year for Delaware, followed by tour of The Mercantile

                 Press’ headquarters highlighting its stable of operating printing presses


WHEN:       April 29, 2013 at 10:00 a.m.


WHERE:     The Mercantile Press, 3007 Bellevue Avenue, Wilmington, DE 19802


The Mercantile Press is the oldest printing company in the State of Delaware, with a business history spanning three centuries. The company is a full-service print communications company specializing in product labeling, direct mail printing and packaging. In 1871, Mercantile Press founder Harry Bye began his printing-related endeavors at the age of 12 when he invested $7.00 in a crude printing outfit. Thirteen years later, in 1884, Harry and his brother, Elmer, purchased some used printing equipment and founded the Mercantile Press in the city of Wilmington, Del., where its headquarters remains, today.


Since 2001, the Mercantile Press has been led by Coleman E. (“Corky”) Bye, III, a fourth generation Bye family member. Under Coleman’s leadership, the business has defied daunting odds in the tumultuous printing industry to find successes, thanks to a re-focused strategic plan that Coleman drafted with the help of SBA-backed SCORE.


Coleman Bye was nominated for SBA’s “Delaware Small Business Person of the Year” award by George Mills, Vice President, M & T Bank and Robert O’Brien, Counselor, SCORE Delaware. SBA’s Delaware Small Business Person of the Year award winner is selected annually from among nominees located across the state of Delaware.


Bruce Elliott, 1150 AM WILM/1450 WDOV Programming Director and Host of “Elliott in the Morning” will present the award to Coleman E. (“Corky”) Bye III at Delaware’s annual “SBA Stand Up for Small Business” awards dinner at 5:30 p.m. on May 21 at Deerfield Golf Club, 507 Thompson Station Road, Newark, Del. 19711. Earlier that day, Deerfield Golf Club is offering discounted tee times for event participants. The event is open to the media.


The May 21 awards event is a local observance of the annual National Small Business Week, which will be observed this year June 17-21. National Small Business Week recognizes the small business community’s contribution to the American economy and culminates in the announcement of the National Small Business Person of the Year.


To request an interview or photographs, please contact Jennifer Pilcher, the SBA’s Public Information Officer in the Delaware District Office, at 302-573-6294, ext. 222 or


This media alert does not constitute or imply an endorsement by SBA of any opinions, products or services of any private individual or entity.


The SBA is an independent federal agency, created in 1953, to assist small businesses to start, grow, and prosper. The SBA provides financial assistance by: (1) making loans to help families and businesses recover from national disasters and (2) providing loan guarantees to commercial financial institutions for working capital (7(a) loans), buildings/land/equipment (504 loans through the Certified Development Corporations), and for exports. Through our resource partners, the SBA also offers a variety of business development programs and services such as training, government contracting and export assistance. SBA resource partners include Small Businesses Development Centers, Women’s Business Centers, and SCORE (Counselors to America’s Small Businesses). For information on all of SBA’s programs and services, visit the Delaware District web site at or call (302)573-6294.