UMD Small Business Development Center Awarded Federal Grant to Assist Baltimore Businesses After Civil Unrest

UMD Small Business Development Center Awarded Federal Grant to Assist Baltimore Businesses After Civil Unrest

COLLEGE PARK, Md. - The U.S. Small Business Administration has announced that the Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at the University of Maryland will receive a grant of more than $250,000 as part of a state funding package aimed to help rebuild areas of the Baltimore community impacted by the recent civil unrest. 

“The SBA is committed to empowering Baltimore’s entrepreneurs to rebuild and realize their potential,” said Maria Contreras-Sweet, Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Based on preliminary assessments by the Baltimore Development Corporation and the SBDC, in which they toured neighborhood businesses, spoke to existing clients and attended community meetings, the SBDC determined that Baltimore area businesses will require immediate and long-term, in depth assistance. 

The overall package consists of several components, including funding for microloans and grants, assistance to small businesses seeking to obtain government contracts, an increase for entrepreneurial development funding, and a targeted push to bring high-tech innovation to Baltimore. 

Funds will be used to augment the assistance currently provided. The SBDC will secure and deploy one additional full-time senior business advisor and one part-time bilingual business advisor to address the needs of the affected businesses; provide comprehensive assessment of overall impact from business disruption; assist owners in calculating/documenting estimates of damage/loss; identify and assist businesses in securing financial resources including grants and low interest loans;  work individually with businesses to develop a strategic plan to ensure future success; and deliver disaster preparedness training.

“These funds will allow us to broaden our reach and provide much needed support to businesses outside our current client base,” said Renée Sprow, director of the Small Business Development Center at the University of Maryland.  

Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, Maryland federal officials Sen. Ben Cardin, Rep. Elijah Cummings, Rep. John Sarbanes, and Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger, and SBA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Natalia Olson-Urtecho, as well as Baltimore Development Corporation (BDC) President and CEO William H. Cole, IV attended the special event where the grant announcement was made.

The Small Business Development Center specializes in providing assistance to businesses in various stages of development. It is headquartered at the University of Maryland and manages 5 regional offices through the state.

For more information, visit www.marylandsbdc.org.

June 3, 2015


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Kevin Plank, co-founder of Under Armour, is an alumnus of UMD's Robert H. Smith School of Business.