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2016 Larimer SBDC Annual Report

Tuesday, March 07, 2017
 

Mike O'Connell

Larimer SBDC Director      
2016 was a breakout year for the Larimer SBDC in terms of strategic partner relationships, consulting and economic impact metrics, and local awareness of our center. 

Early 2016 saw us coordinating and integrating with the restructured Loveland Business Development Center (LBDC).We are now working seamlessly together, with the SBDC acting as a key "content provider" to the LBDC. The LBDC team has worked very hard, and brought a lot of value to the Loveland small business community. During 2016, we added consulting availability in Berthoud and Wellington, so that entrepreneurs can access SBDC services at any municipality in Larimer County. 

In November, we worked with the East Colorado SBDC and the Colorado SBDC lead center to execute the inaugural Northern Colorado Women's Small Business Conference, held at the Embassy Suites in Loveland, which was a huge success with over 350 attendees. We also continue to manage the "Recovery Colorado" disaster recovery program, with the support of the Estes Park Economic Development Corporation. This grant program has provided over $2.3M to 59 Estes Valley small businesses. 

Almost all of our 2016 metrics are record high numbers for our center. We consulted with 640 clients over nearly 3,500 consulting hours, more than double our 2013 client count, and almost triple our 2013 consulting hours. We also conducted 100 trainings/workshops, attended by over 1,000 entrepreneurs. 

The plan for 2017 is to " .. do it the same, but better .. ". We will be strongly promoting three of our higher-end programs to support growing existing businesses. We will support the Fort Collins and Loveland Start Up weeks in February and April. We will again execute the Women's Small Business Conference in November 2017. Most importantly, 2017 marks the 30th year that Front Range Community College (FRCC) has hosted and significantly sponsored the North Metro Denver and Larimer SBDC centers, and we will be conducting a major campaign throughout 2017 to say a huge "Thank You" to FRCC for their support of Northern Colorado entrepreneurs. 

We have a great well-connected team that makes it all of the above happen. Terri Donovan-Keirns manages the hundreds of consulting sessions and numerous classes with exceptional competence and thoroughness. Our administrator and FRCC graduate Kat Rico has really enhanced the "face" of both the North Metro Denver and Larimer through her marketing and social media skills. Our consulting network is strong, committed, and engaged, and the best its ever been, in my opinion. I also have the privilege of being the Co-Chair of the Larimer County Workforce Development Board (WDB) this year, which supports the critical and extensive work done by the Larimer County Workforce Center. 

2016 was a rewarding year, and I look forward to working with all of you in 2017! 

Mike O'Connell
Larimer SBDC Director

Read the Full Larimer SBDC 2016 Annual Report

7 Incredible Facts About Women Owned Businesses

Thursday, February 23, 2017
Information provided by: CreditLoan

There are a dozen different reasons why women prefer to work in an environment that is surrounded by fellow women. For one, there are more benefits and leaves given to them in a company that understands that employees or spouses get sick. In a patriarchal environment, the set up for taking time off is so rigid and strict that women often have to go in when they are sick. The work schedule is not flexible at all, and there is usually no option to work from home on days when the employee is needed at home.

As a result, women who are unable to find nannies or suitable child care for their kids are forced to resign from work or find another job with a better arrangement - often below their skillset or totally out of their comfort zones.

When women create companies and establish businesses, they take these things to mind and adapt a completely different set up in the company. For example, they allow female employees to bring their kids to work, which has a day care center with qualified staff. The infants can be breastfed or visited during breaks since they are just a few rooms away from their mothers.

In case a child is ill and needs supervision, the parents can file for work from home and continue dispensing their duties and tasks even while not physically present at the office. This is important because it means that their job security is not threatened by them not being around, and they still receive pay while working at home.

We've prepared an infographic discussing incredible facts about women owned businesses to continue to inspire women who want to make a difference in the world. We hope it inspires you too!


Military Veteran Entrepreneurs Mean Big Business for Colorado

Friday, November 14, 2014
In honor of those who have served our country, the Larimer SBDC has researched some powerful statistics about veterans who have come home to start businesses within our state and nationally. 

Who are veteran entrepreneurs?
  • - 9.1% of all business owners in the United States are veterans as of 2012
  • - 7.1% of these veterans are under the age of 35
  • - 4.4% of veteran business owners are women
  • - Veteran business owners are more likely to produce goods as opposed to services
  • - 10.3% of veterans own more than one business, compared with only 7.4% of non-veterans
  • - According to 2007 U.S. Census data, veteran owned businesses are responsible for contributing 1.2 trillion dollars to the United States economy
What impact do veteran business owners have in Colorado?
  • - Colorado has 48,803 small businesses owned exclusively by veterans as of 2007 U.S. Census data
    • -- These business contribute an estimated $23 billion to the Colorado economy
    • -- They also employ 96,373 people, with an annual payroll of $3.6B 
    • -- Approximately 38,000 Colorado veteran owned businesses are owned and operated as sole proprietors, and these businesses generate $2 billion dollars in sales annually

These are not small contributions on top of the service they have already given to their country! Small businesses help stabilize local economies and employ large numbers of citizens. The Small Business Administration and the Larimer SBDC are here to support our veteran entrepreneurs with consulting, training and resources as they look to start and grow their businesses when they return home. Contact us to discover the resources we have available for you!

Whether you are an active duty, reservist or retired service member, thank you for your continued contributions!

Sources
Lichtenstein, Jules. "Profile of Veteran Business Owners." Issue Briefs 1 (2013).
United States Census Bureau. Survey of Business Owners - Veterans. Washinton DC: United States Census Bureau, 2007.