SUNY provides small business assistance

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BINGHAMTON, NY – The SUNY system is stepping up with advisors to help small businesses access the myriad of programs designed to help them survive the pandemic.

SUNY Chancellor Jim Malatras visited the Lost Dog Cafe in Binghamton today to tout the support being offered by the university system’s Small Business Development Center.

One of the 22 centers located across the state is within the Koffman Incubator on Hawley Street.

Since the pandemic began, SBDC’s have assisted 3,000 New York businesses to secure 560 million dollars in funding, saving more than 28,000 jobs.

“It’s not easy. A small business is focused on their business, serving their customers, doing those things. Navigating a federal program is complex. Navigating a state program is complex while you’re trying to keep a business going. We help with all of that from soup to nuts,” says Malatras.

Lost Dog owners Marie McKenna and Liz Hughes used the local SBDC’s help in securing $316,000 in PPP funding last Spring while the restaurant was completely shut down for 2 months.

This week, they returned for assistance in applying for the Restaurant Revitalization Fund, which was part of the recently enacted federal stimulus.

Hughes says the Lost Dog’s history with the Small Business Development Center dates back to 1997 when the organization helped them with their move to the Water Street location.

“We had a great idea, we had a lot of passion. But we lacked the business aspect of it. Moving down here, suddenly we were looking for a loan, there’s things you need for that. Without that kind of background, it’s intimidating,” says Hughes.

The SBDC can also help businesses apply for federal Shuttered Venue Operator Grants.

The agency works with any New York based company with 200 or fewer employees.

There’s no charge for the assistance.

The SBDC that Binghamton University hosts added 4 staff members since the pandemic began.

It covers a 12 county region with outreach posts in Oneonta, Ithaca and Painted Post.

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