As small businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic struggle to hang on, the Florida SBDC at FIU Business (FSBDC) has helped owners in Miami-Dade and Monroe counties navigate disaster assistance programs, getting funds into the business’ hands and developing strategies to weather the crisis.
As of July 14, FSBDC at FIU Business has helped 250 businesses secure $31.25 million in COVID-19 assistance:
- $16.9 million in SBA Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) funds
- $9.75 million in SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL)
- $4.5 million in Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loans
Consultants at the FSBDC guide applicants to the best resources for them, explain the eligibility criteria, assist with applications, walk them through the review process, determine how to put the funds to their best use, and ensure they have the right plan to be successful when conditions improve.
Brian Van Hook, regional director of the FSBDC, explained that the group’s consultants also provide virtual consulting assistance to small businesses in Miami-Dade and the Keys in seeking funds to help cover operations, payroll and other business needs.
“Our team is working to help businesses pivot and adjust business strategies to navigate the new normal in light of COVID-19,” he said. “The goal is not just to help these business weather the pandemic but also to make them stronger and more resilient moving forward.”
The FSBDC at FIU, which began offering services in Miami-Dade County in 2014, has assisted over 3,500 entrepreneurs and small businesses with one-on-one consulting in marketing, financial management, disaster planning and strategy development, all at no-cost. The center also expanded services to Monroe County in October 2018.
Since its launch, the FSBDC at FIU Business has helped launch more than 193 businesses and assisted local entrepreneurs and small-business owners in creating or retaining 9,990 jobs; generating $1.33 billion in increased sales; acquiring $123.3 million in government contracts; and accessing $144.5 million in capital via loans and equity investments.
Resources available for small businesses: