Small and medium-size business is a huge part of the American economy and entrepreneurship is a key engine of economic growth. According to a Wall Street Journal November 2015 report, “hiring at small firms has outpaced that at larger firms for the past 19 months.” Small businesses account for three-quarters of all new jobs in this country and embody the spirit of innovation, entrepreneurship and individual initiative.
Supporting entrepreneurship, especially small and medium sized entrepreneurs, is critical to driving economic growth and creating inclusive and sustainable economies. However, in order to be successful, entrepreneurs also need to be connected to a larger ecosystem that can foster their growth.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the world's largest business federation representing 3 million businesses of all sizes, sectors, and regions, as well as state and local chambers and industry associations. More than 96% of U.S. Chamber members are small businesses with 100 employees or fewer.
As the nonprofit 501 (c)3 affiliate of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation (USCCF) has created a track record in promoting small business growth and strengthening the entrepreneurial ecosystems in communities across the United States.
Through partnering with our network of 2,100 state and local chambers in the United States and 117 international Chambers of Commerce, we have begun engaging entrepreneurs in the U.S. and globally to analyze and address the gaps in the ecosystem for entrepreneurship while our partners at the U.S. Chamber promote the regulatory environment necessary for small business to thrive.
The business community is actively involved in supporting small and medium-sized businesses in a number of ways, including:
- Donating to Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs), which provide credit, financial services, and mentoring to underserved markets and populations. Providing financial training and workforce development tools
- Offering disaster preparation counseling services
- Hosting a small business’s website for no cost
- Lending purchasing power for a small business’s use
- Intentionally integrating small and medium sized businesses into the supply chain
- Encouraging consumers to purchase at small businesses
- Helping small businesses establish corporate responsibility programs
Why does business engage this issue?
Small businesses are an integral part of a vibrant, healthy economy. Business has an interest not just in their share of the marketplace, but in the marketplace’s overall health. Small business success contributes to an environment in which all businesses can succeed.
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