SBA's Deputy Administrator Marie Johns Honors Philadelphia's "SBA Emerging 200" Graduates

Oct 26, 2011, 15:30 ET from U.S. Small Business Administration

Ceremony honors inner-city small business owners at City Hall

PHILADELPHIA, Oct. 26, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- U.S. Small Business Administration Deputy Administrator Marie Johns honored entrepreneurs completing its Emerging 200 (e200) Program at a graduation ceremony yesterday at Philadelphia City Hall.


"You are the brightest rising stars in your communities. And as e200/Emerging Leaders graduates, you are equipped with the tools and the know-how to take your business to the next level. I have no doubt that you will go far, in business and in life," Johns said.

SBA identified inner-city businesses across the nation demonstrating high growth potential and provided these small businesses with a free, intensive business education program: a six-month course of in-depth education in organization management, growth strategies and management, market development and strategic planning.

Johns stressed the importance of small businesses as the engine of the economy, creating two out of every three jobs in the United States.  

"Half of all Americans own or work for small businesses like yours. And we are counting on you to grow the economy and create jobs in your neighborhood," Johns said. "You are already leaders in your community. Today I am calling on you to roll up your sleeves and do what you can to drive our economy forward. Hire more workers and create more jobs. Be a mentor to young people and help create the next generation of entrepreneurs."

Since 2008, Emerging Leaders have been a catalyst for job creation and business growth in 27 cities across America. Nearly 1,000 small business owners have graduated from the program. Despite the tough economy, these entrepreneurs have seen a 60 percent increase in revenue, created hundreds of new jobs and secured millions of dollars in financing and government contracts.

"The SBA can support you as you seize new opportunities and face new challenges. When you need capital to expand your business, we can help you get a loan," Johns said. "If you want to get into government contracting, we can find you contracts to bid on. Or if you just want to keep learning and growing, we can find you a counselor or a mentor."

"Even though you are graduating today, this is the beginning of a lasting partnership. No matter what you go on to do with your business, the SBA will be there," Johns said.

Philadelphia-area businesses honored at the Philadelphia e200 graduation ceremony:

  • A-Ware Marketing, LLC
  • DiPinto Guitars
  • Grand Hank Productions, Inc.
  • Innovative Alternative Energy Corp.
  • Mendoza Group, Inc.
  • Minuteman Press, Philadelphia
  • Nature Soy, Inc.
  • New Mainstream Press
  • Precision Plus Plumbing
  • Ultimate Concrete

Organizations and businesses that worked with SBA in the e200 program in Philadelphia:

  • The City of Philadelphia
  • AMEC Earth and Environmental, Inc.
  • Greater Philadelphia Asian American Chamber of Commerce 
  • Continental Bank
  • Delaware Valley Industrial Resource Center
  • Finanta
  • Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce
  • Philadelphia Service Corps of Retired Executives
  • Women's Business Development Center

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SOURCE U.S. Small Business Administration