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My 100-Day Progress Report

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My 100-Day Progress Report

By Maria Contreras-Sweet, SBA Administrator
Published: July 15, 2014 Updated: July 16, 2014

It has been an exhilarating first 100 days on the job. When I was sworn in as SBA Administrator in April, I promised to “get more loans into the hands of entrepreneurs who reflect the diversity of America by making it easier for community banks and microlenders to become our partners.”

Following up on this promise, I recently announced a transformative new plan to automate SBA lending and streamline and simplify the agency’s underwriting process to attract more lending partners and open up new markets for small business owners who need capital to expand and grow.  Days after this announcement, which will ease the burdens on lenders approving small-dollar loans to entrepreneurs, I appeared at a Clinton Global Initiative conference in Denver to help announce an exciting commitment called the Century Club. Eight Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) each pledged to make at least 100 small business loans a year for the next 10 years, which will inject $1 billion of additional capital into America’s small business ecosystem.

Last week, we continued our progress in expanding access to capital. At the White House, I joined President Obama to announce a new initiative called SupplierPay. More than two dozen major corporations pledged to pay their small business suppliers faster and offer other creative financing solutions to get entrepreneurs access to affordable working capital so they have the payment certainty to make new hires and grow their companies.

We’ve also been focused on creating new opportunities for our veterans who wish to translate their military leadership skills into opportunities to serve their country as civilian job creators. We “rebooted” our popular Boots to Business entrepreneurship program – a two-day crash course in starting a small business followed by an eight-week, instructor-led online course. We’re now conducting this program for transitioning service members at more than 200 military installations worldwide. And last week at the White House, we expanded this initiative to serve veterans who’ve already transitioned out.

At Twitter headquarters, the SBA launched a new competition for entities – university incubators or local nonprofits – that help seed start-ups by offering up office space, mentoring, networking, business-plan assistance, and sometimes startup capital, too. We’re exporting the Silicon Valley support model to communities in Middle America. The competition will fund up to 50 accelerators that are focused on key industries like clean energy and health care, as well as those focused on underserved populations, including women entrepreneurs, minorities, and small business owners in distressed urban and rural areas.

In recognition of the reality that there are still communities disproportionately struggling in the aftermath of the Great Recession, I also launched Scale-Up America – another competitive program that will bring intensive SBA assistance to up to 14 cities with strong small business growth potential. We’re excited about this program, because more than 90 percent of new jobs generated by small businesses come from the expansion of existing businesses.

Finally, as an immigrant myself, I was proud to represent the United States in El Salvador to meet with the country’s new leadership and recognize the peaceful succession of President Salvador Sánchez Cerén. I had the opportunity to meet with Salvadoran small business owners, who provide 70 percent of the country’s jobs, and promote the bilateral Partnership for Growth plan signed by both nations in recognition of the increasingly important role Latin American nations are playing in the global economy.

These first 100 days have been a whirlwind, and I am buoyed by the energy and optimism of all the entrepreneurs I’ve met in cities across America. There’s still so much more to do. I hope you’ll contact me on Twitter @MCS4biz to keep the dialogue going as we continue our forward momentum into the fall.



About the Author:

Maria Contreras-Sweet
Maria Contreras-Sweet

SBA Administrator

Maria Contreras-Sweet is Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration and a member of President Obama’s cabinet. The SBA helps both Main Street and high-growth small businesses get access to capital, counseling, federal contracts, disaster assistance and more.


Your 100-Day Progress Report is my Learning experience.
Yes 100 days have really been struggling period where major decision have been taken by Maria Contreras-Sweet, hats off to her initiative to provide a new face value to business, whereby giving all security & surety in their progress. Chứng chỉ kế toán trưởng
I would like to know more about startup loans and grants that small business startup owners should know about.
Maria, Keep up the great work! The (my) franchise community is behind you. The Franchise King®
Your 100-Day Progress Report is my Learning experience.
Can you please address the use of JOC by many cities and the lack of small business participation. Is there a way the a small business General Construction Company can participate in an on-call as the JOC does?
I'd like to see the business plan for justifying the idea of "exporting the Silicon Valley support model." I hope, at the very least, you will be measuring what really matters with that experiment -- and counting how many business plans were generated over 6-12 months is dumb metric. We don't need more university or non-profit incubators offer space. Eventually all they will do is rent space or remain empty, and programs will fall by the wayside for lack of funding. The SBA also needs to stop focusing so heavily on the 4-year colleges and research institutions. Those institutions primarily are turning out people who will go into academia, research, and business management -- they will not build businesses from the ground up. The two-year, especially the technical colleges have far greater potential. The SBA needs to focus more attention and funding on those institutions.
Maria, You clearly have been very busy and I think the programs you are developing are very exciting. I would like to speak with someone about my business plans to see if they fit with the goals you have developed. Where would you recommend as the best place to start? I have seen other good SBA plans in the past but have found that a simple, easy way to get started seems to be more difficult than anticipated. Thank you
Thank you to share your experience with us Maria
Maria, I am glad that we have dedicated and passionate advocates like you. In particularly, I believe that your plans for larger corporations to offer small business loans and the creation of opportunities for the veterans to use their military leadership to civilian job creators are excellent initiatives. I wish your team every success in your good work for the people.


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