Columbia, SC – The U.S. Small Business Administration renewed its $1.8 million annual grant to the South Carolina Small Business Development Center Network in March. Like other SBDCs across the nation, South Carolina’s program is funded by the SBA through a matching grant that includes both financial and in-kind contributions from program partners including private enterprise, state and local governments, institutions of higher learning and local economic development organizations.
The funding the SC SBDC received from the SBA allows the network to continue its 42-year mission of providing small business owners and entrepreneurs throughout South Carolina the consulting, education and resources they need to thrive. This includes free business counseling assistance to established businesses and aspiring entrepreneurs, as well as a wide variety of educational workshops and webinars.
As a responsible steward of this funding, the SC SBDC will leverage it to sustain the network’s infrastructure of 20 Area Centers located throughout the state’s 46 counties and the 50 consultants and staff working to advance South Carolina’s economic development by helping entrepreneurs grow successful businesses. The award also helps underwrite the cost of office space, equipment, supplies, telecommunications equipment and other operating expenses.
“We are very grateful to our SBDC partners for equipping South Carolina entrepreneurs with the tools they need to start, grow, expand, and recover,” said Gregg White, District Director for the South Carolina District Office. “This past year, the SC SBDC network assisted over 22,000 clients in the state! They helped start 143 new businesses, and created and retained almost 4,000 jobs in South Carolina. They are a vital asset to the economic growth in our state, and to our district office.”
In 2020, the SC Small Business Development Centers network assisted more than four times the number of small businesses and entrepreneurs than in a typical year. SBDC clients in South Carolina obtained $77.1 million in capital formation and captured $3.4 million in government contracts. The SC SBDC also expanded and enhanced numerous tools and services to address the changing needs of the small business community and focus on business recovery.
The SC SBDC is hosted by a consortium of four state universities: Clemson, USC, SC State and Winthrop. In addition, other colleges and universities act as local hosts.