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SBA Creates Long-term Opportunity for Entrepreneurs through Government Contracting

SBA Creates Long-term Opportunity for Entrepreneurs through Government Contracting

Drive 8(a) Initiative Launches across the Southeast Empowering Small Business

The SBA makes the American dream of business ownership a reality by empowering entrepreneurs with the tools and resources they need to succeed. Regional Administrator Ashley D. Bell has made it a priority to not only help small businesses succeed, but to help them succeed for many generations to come.  With this priority in mind, Regional Administrator Bell launched Drive 8(a) across the Southeast to assist entrepreneurs in diversifying their long-term success through selling to the federal government.

Drive 8(a) has become part of the culture of each SBA district office located in Region 4. Each district has developed an active 8(a) Steering Committee comprised of public and private leaders to help lead the initiative in each respective state. The committee is tasked with two priorities: one is to recruit small businesses into the SBA’s 8(a) Business Development Program (a 9-year program to support their development and growth, and assist small businesses in securing 8(a) set-aside federal contracts). The second priority is to assist 8(a) firms who are nearing their graduation date to continue to succeed as they exit the program with the expectation of being able to compete in the open marketplace. As part of the success of the initiative, seasoned 8(a) firms are encouraged to join with younger 8(a) firms and take on a mentor role to these firms to assist them in seeking continued success.

“I couldn’t be more excited to launch Drive 8(a). We want to be sure that more firms are entering in to the 8(a) program than are graduating, and this initiative is the ticket. The 8(a) Business Development Program has proven to be a vehicle for success for small business and it is our responsibility at the SBA to be sure that the success continues. We are actively educating entrepreneurs on the advantages of relocating to HUBZones and Opportunity Zones in order to continue success with federal contracting and to take advantage of the great financial benefits that are available in these areas. This is just one piece of Drive 8(a). We look forward to working with the local, state and federal partners across the Southeast to assure that Drive 8(a) is a continued success for our small businesses,” says Ashley D. Bell, Regional Administrator.

Upcoming Drive 8(a) events may be found on SBA District office calendar of events, or also by following #Drive8a on Twitter @SBASoutheast.

A complete list of Drive 8(a) Steering Committee Members from across the Southeast may be found here. The committees consist of local government leadership, current 8(a) firms, graduated 8(a) firms, resource partners, and contracting organizations.

The NC Military Business Center, the NC Community College System, and the State of North Carolina do not officially endorse events. These items are posted strictly for the information and convenience of NCMBC customers.

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