Drive 8(a) Federal Contracting Summit at Benedict College

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South Carolina District Office

u s small business administration
Grow Your Business

Capital & Contracting Workshop for
Women-Owned Businesses

The Greater Florence Chamber of Commerce PRISM program, in partnership with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), will host a Contracting & Capital Workshop for Women-Owned Businesses. The program will begin at 2:00 p.m. At the workshop, representatives from the SBA will provide woman-owned businesses with the information they need to know about how to secure contracts to grow their respective business. The workshop will also cover access to capital and financing options, both traditional and alternative. Attendance for the Contracting Workshop for Women-Owned Businesses is free, but advance registration is required since seating is limited.

Thursday, February 13, 2020 - 2:00pm EST
Greater Florence Chamber of Commerce
100 West Evans St, Florence, SC 29501

Veterans, let us serve you. SBA can help your small business start, grow, expand and recover.

U.S Department of Veterans Affairs - Veteran Employment Job Fair

Veteran Affairs will be hosting a job fair for veterans. SBA will have a table at the event to promote entrepreneurship resources. Stop by and learn how SBA can help you create your own employment.

Thursday, February 13, 2020 - 11:00am EST
Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center
109 Bee Street, Charleston, SC 29401
No Registration Required

8(a) Business Development Program Information Session

Drive 8(a) Federal Contracting Summit

Hosted by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) South Carolina District Office.

  • Are you a minority or socially disadvantaged business looking to expand your contracting opportunities with the federal government?
  • Is your net worth below $250k (economically disadvantaged)?
  • Have you been in business for at least two years?

If so, you might be missing a huge opportunity to gain access to federal contracts that are set aside for 8(a) Business Development Program. At the Drive 8a Summit , participants will learn how to qualify, apply, and utilize the certification to increase business revenue. Also, you will get the opportunity to hear from and ask questions of Forest Service, a Federal Agency, as they speak on what they look for when selecting contractors and how to work with Forest Service.

There will be one session in the morning and one in the afternoon.

Tuesday, February 18, 2020 - 9:00am & 1:00pm EST
Benedict College Business Development Center
2601 Read Street, Columbia, SC 29204

Information Corner

Disaster Loans Apply

SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans Available in South Carolina Following Secretary of Agriculture Disaster Declaration

The U.S. Small Business Administration announced that Working Capital Disaster Loans are available to small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture and private nonprofit organizations located in Dillon, Horry and Marlboro counties, South Carolina as a result of Hurricane Dorian on Sept. 6-10, 2019.

“These counties are eligible because they are contiguous to one or more primary counties in North Carolina. The Small Business Administration recognizes that disasters do not usually stop at county or state lines. For that reason, counties adjacent to primary counties named in the declaration are included,” said Kem Fleming, director of SBA’s Field Operations Center East.

Under this declaration, the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program is available to eligible farm-related and nonfarm-related entities that suffered financial losses as a direct result of this disaster. With the exception of aquaculture enterprises, SBA cannot provide disaster loans to agricultural producers, farmers and ranchers.

The loan amount can be up to $2 million with interest rates of 4 percent for small businesses and 2.75 percent for private nonprofit organizations, with terms up to 30 years. The SBA determines eligibility based on the size of the applicant, type of activity and its financial resources. Loan amounts and terms are set by the SBA and are based on each applicant’s financial condition. These working capital loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable, and other bills that could have been paid had the disaster not occurred. The loans are not intended to replace lost sales or profits.

Applicants may apply online using the Electronic Loan Application (ELA) via SBA’s secure website at

Disaster loan information and application forms may also be obtained by calling the SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (800-877-8339 for the deaf and hard-of-hearing) or by sending an email to Loan applications can be downloaded from Completed applications should be mailed to: U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.

Submit completed loan applications to SBA no later than Sept. 14, 2020.

Upcoming Events

How to Start a New Business
Small Business Development Center
Thursday, February 13, 2020 - 10:00am EST
McCormick County Chamber of Commerce
100 South Main Street, McCormick, SC 29835
Registration Required

Government Contracting - Making Them Yours
Thursday, February 13, 2020 - 10:00am EST
Women's Business Center of SC at Columbia College
1301 Columbia College Drive, Columbia, SC 29203

Legal, Accounting and Insurance Basics for Business
SCORE Business Mentor
Friday, February 14, 2020 - 10:00am EST
Aiken Chamber of Commerce
121 Richland Avenue East, Aiken, SC 29801

Veteran-Owned Small Business Coffee With Congressman Joe Cunningham
Wednesday, February 19, 2020 - 8:30am EST
Lonnie Hamilton Services Building, Room 339
4045 Bridge View Drive, North Charleston, SC 29405
No Registration Required

Payroll Taxes 101: What Every Business Owner Needs to Know to be Complaint
Small Business Development Center
Wednesday, February 19, 2020 - 9:00am EST
Trident United Way Community Room
6296 Rivers Avenue, N. Charleston, SC 29406

Full SBA and Resource Partner Calendar

Rural Strong Business Expo on March 4th from 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the James C. Self Conference Center in Greenwood