Recently in the Small Business and Micobusiness Lending Category

Cathy Martine, AT&T Executive Vice President, Small/Medium Business Solutions, addressed WIPP's and SBEC's Small Business Policy Luncheon at the Republican National Convention.  Her opening remark was:  "We have come together to elevate the voice of women entrepreneurs in the public arena."  Cathy acknowledged the role of small business as an engine of job growth.  Her remarks included a call to action:  "We must continue to drive that message home with public policy makers."  Her comments were particularly insightful as last evening Governor Romney said in his acceptance speech,  "Today women are more likely than men to start a business."  The US Census' 2007 Survey of Business Owners reports that there are 7.8 million women-owned businesses in the United States.


Cathy shared three recommendations for government leaders, as well as the corporate community at large:  1) dramatically increase the availability of affordable financing; 2) accelerate the availability of technology; and 3) encourage government and business leaders to more freely share resources and advice.

Luncheon guests learned about AT&T Capital Services which has provided tens of millions of dollars in lease-financing for communications services for business customers and municipalities.  They were reminded about AT&T's commitment to technology, especially in the area of broadband and wireless technologies, upon which small businesses are heavily reliant.  Lastly, Cathy described AT&T's  "Safeguard Your Businessprogram which is designed to help small businesses prepare an action plan in the case of fire, hurricane or other disasters that could otherwise cripple their business.

Cathy issued a call to action that we want to pass along and encourage everyone to take NOW - a pledge not to text and drive!  You can take the pledge and learn more about the  "It Can Wait"campaign, which focuses on putting an end to texting while driving.

Today Women Accessing Capital, one of Women Impacting Public Policy (WIPP)'s educational programs, hosted a webinar, "The Landscape of Community Development Lending for Small Business." Connie Evans, President and CEO, Association for Enterprise Opportunity, shared a wealth of information on alternative funding sources for women small business owners who are seeking capital. Some key take aways were:

  • Community Development Financial Institutions emphasize relationship-based lending and will look at you and your business beyond quantitative factors. These lenders can be a good option for start-up companies and individuals with damaged credit or limited collateral. For more information visit www.cdfi.org
  • The microenterprise landscape is defined as a business with 5 or fewer employees, and 88% of businesses in the US fall into this category. If 1 in 3 microenterprises hired just one more person, the US would be at full employment!
  • The Association for Enterprise Opportunity (AEO) is the voice for microenterprise. AEO creates opportunities for underserved entrepreneurs and assists them in starting, stabilizing, and expanding business. To learn more about how they can help your small business, visit http://www.aeoworks.org
View the full Women Accessing Capital presentation here, and listen to the podcast as well.

To learn more about Women Accessing Capital, visit www.womenaccessingcapital.com

 

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