SBA and Mission EDC Sign Strategic Alliance to Foster Entrepreneurship
HARLINGEN ─ The U.S. Small Business Administration’s Lower Rio Grande Valley District Office (LRGVDO) and the Mission Economic Development Corporation signed a Strategic Alliance Memorandum (SAM) to encourage entrepreneurship and economic empowerment through increased collaboration on financial education for residents and small business owners.
The formal acceptance took place during the Grand Opening Ceremony on Wednesday, October 12, 2016 at the Center for Education and Economic Development (CEED), 801 N. Bryan Rd., Mission with Mission EDC Executive Director Alex Meade and SBA District Director Angela Burton signing the memorandum.
“The benefit of the partnership is clear – the SAM is intended to spur economic development through entrepreneurial education and programs that advances greater access to capital, expanded technical assistance and access to procurement programs,” District Director Angela Burton said.
The SBA focuses on three key areas to prospective small business owners: Capital – access to financing options to start or grow a business; Contracts – the SBA encourages federal agencies to award more contracts to small businesses; and Counseling – seminars, assistance with writing business plans, market studies, sales projections, certifications and eligibility determination.
“We are very excited to collaborate with the SBA on programs that will further empower potential entrepreneurs and small business owners to create and grow here in Mission,” said Mission EDC CEO Alex Meade. “This agreement aligns perfectly with our mission to provide a first class entrepreneurial environment to grow business and jobs in the city.”
In FY 2016, SBA lending partners made 16 federally backed loans to small businesses in Mission hitting more than $2.6 million, a 45 percent dollar value increase from FY 2015. Those 16 loans resulted in, the retention of 106 jobs and the creation of 35 jobs.
The SBA’s Lower Rio Grande Valley District Office is located in Harlingen, Texas with a branch office in Corpus Christi, Texas. The Lower Rio Grande Valley District Office covers 14 counties and serves approximately 176,000 small business firms and is comprised of a diverse landscape to include international ports of entry, beaches, deep sea ports, ranch land, and metropolitan cities.