• Research Finds Florida SBDCs Have Substantial Impact On State’s Economy

    43,856 jobs created, retained & saved at a cost of $119 per job

    FSBDCN State Office: Fostering entrepreneurship and growing small businesses are the foundation for job creation and our state’s economic vitality. Governor Rick Scott, quoted by the National Federation of Independent Businesses, stated “Small businesses are the fabric of our local communities and the backbone of the Florida’s economy.” As one of Florida’s most important economic contributors, small businesses employ over 42 percent of the Florida’s workforce and represent 98 percent of the state’s firms. New research on small businesses in Florida validates this claim.

    According to an independent study conducted by the Haas Center for Business Research and Economic Development, Economic Impact of SBDC Business Development Activities on the Florida Economy, 2012, the Florida SBDC Network program helped entrepreneurs create, retain and save a total of 43,856 jobs across the state at a significantly low cost of $119 per job.

    “The SBDC’s minimal per-job cost to the Florida taxpayer represents a significant departure from norm in an era when states and regions typically compete through their economic development organizations for jobs that cost the taxpayers several thousand dollars each,” said Dr. Rod Lewis, Director of the Haas Center. “The Florida SBDC Network provides invaluable services to small businesses across the state of Florida.”

    These growing businesses increased sales by $6 billion, generated $213 million in state tax revenue, and contributed more than $3.3 billion to the state’s economy as a result of the work of the Florida SBDC Network.

    “The return on investment in the SBDC program is substantial. For every $1 invested in the program, $41.07 is returned to the state in tax revenue,” said Jerry Cartwright, State Director of the Florida SBDC Network. “These results point to the importance of small businesses having access to the management and technical assistance they need to make sound business decisions in this economy.”

    The research also found that small businesses assisted by the FSBDCs are growing at a much faster rate than the average Florida firm, and that the FSBDC helps create high-skill, high-wage jobs in the state. Established manufacturing firms, for example, that received business consulting from the FSBDC saw a job growth of 8.7% compared to 1.4% growth for the average Florida manufacturing firm.

    As the state-designated principal provider of small business assistance [§288.001, Fla. Stat.], the Florida SBDC Network serves the complex and diverse needs of entrepreneurs and businesses through no-cost professional consulting, value-added business training, and access to business information. Since its inception, the FSBDCs have served over 1.1 million entrepreneurs and small business owners and is the only statewide organization capable of providing business assistance through all stages of their business growth.

    “Clearly, the SBDC program is a good value and practical investment for the state,” said Cartwright. “The benefits of businesses that grow and succeed are essential to individuals, families and local communities as these companies create jobs, generate wealth, and expand our economy.”

    About the FSBDC Network

    For over 35 years, the FSBDC Network has nourished a statewide partnership between higher education and economic development organizations, dedicated to providing emerging and established business owners with management and technical assistance, enabling overall growth and increased profitability for the businesses and economic prosperity for the state. A statewide service network of 39 centers with 65 outreach locations, the FSBDC Network is funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration, hosted by the University of West Florida and accredited through the national Association of SBDCs. To learn more about the FSBDC Network or to find a SBDC near you, visit www.FloridaSBDC.org or call 1.866.737.7232.