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SBA Launches New, Free Online Digital Learning Platform

Ascent built to assist nearly 13 million women-owned small businesses
Release Date: 
Monday, January 11, 2021
Release Number: 
21-04
Contact: 
charles.abell@sba.gov & (832) 388-3016

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Small Business Administration Administrator Jovita Carranza, today announced the launch of Ascent, a first-of-its-kind, free digital e-learning platform geared to help women entrepreneurs grow and expand their businesses. Ascent has valuable content such as tips on preparing and recovering from disasters, strategic marketing and business financial strategy development.

Ascent is a joint initiative between the White House, the SBA, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Women’s Bureau and the U.S. Department of the Treasury.  Designed to support women entrepreneurs looking to remain resilient in their operations, Ascent is packed with content and resources from each agency and backed by academic research.

“I am pleased to announce the launch of our ground-breaking interactive-virtual learning platform to guide women-owned businesses through the journey of growing their business.  Throughout this year alone, we know that small businesses need our support now more than ever as they evaluate, retool and pivot from the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.  Ascent includes valuable and timely resources to help women business owners navigate and prepare their business models from potential impacts.  I want to thank former SBA Administrator and business owner, Linda McMahon, who planted the seed for this endeavor,” said Administrator Carranza.  “It is an incredible privilege to assist women-owned businesses – a key pillar of our nation’s economic firepower – thrive and achieve success.  This initiative, along with the recent announcement of opening 20 new Women’s Business Centers in 2021, is the SBA’s largest single expansion of resources specifically tailored for women in more than 30 years and furthers our nation’s commitment to nearly 13 million women-owned businesses.  I look forward to working with our partners nationwide to shine a light on American women business owners and their journey to success, job creation and economic independence.”

Women entrepreneurs start and own nearly half of all businesses in the United States, employ 9.4 million workers, generate $1.9 trillion in revenue and represent all industries.  Ascent offers several key journeys to assist women business owners with strategies towards growth and success, including Disaster & Economic Recovery, Strategic Marketing, Your People, Your Business Financial Strategy and Access to Capital.  Each journey contains content and tools needed to grow your business. Additional topics will be added over time.

“The Ascent digital learning platform is a practical, user-friendly tool and a one-stop-shop for female entrepreneurs to gain knowledge on how to elevate their business goals, overcome burdensome challenges and grow their existing business,” said Allen Gutierrez, Associate Administrator, Office of Entrepreneurial Development.  “The launch of this useful and timely platform will provide women-owned small businesses the resources they need to start, grow and expand their business.  We hope that you enjoy your journey with Ascent.”

Visit Ascent.SBA.gov and register for your free access today. For additional opportunities on how women entrepreneurs can start, grow and recover, visit SBA.gov or contact your local SBA District Office.

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About the U.S. Small Business Administration

The U.S. Small Business Administration helps power the American dream of business ownership. As the only go-to resource and voice for small businesses backed by the strength of the federal government, the SBA empowers entrepreneurs and small business owners with the resources and support they need to start, grow or expand their businesses, or recover from a declared disaster. It delivers services through an extensive network of SBA field offices and partnerships with public and private organizations. To learn more, visit www.sba.gov.