We are big fans of  SBDC’s across the nation here at Palo Alto Software. The SBDC network is dedicated to helping small businesses and entrepreneurs around the country realize their dream of starting, owning and growing their business. Something that we’re completely committed to as well. For any entrpreneuer, the SBDC is an invaluable resource, offering support, advice, resources, classes and dedicated counselors and staff all focused on giving you the best chance at succeeding in starting or growing your business.

Recently, I reached out to Mark Gregory, the new Associate State Director of the Oregon Small Business Development Center Network to ask if he’d be willing to share some of the OSBDCN’s stories of success and some information on the great work the OSBDCN is doing in Oregon:

Since its inception in 1983, the Oregon Small Business Development Center Network (OSBDCN) has provided one-on-one counseling to over 135,000 current and prospective businesses. Over 500,000 individuals have attended OSBDCN training activities.  Professional certified business counselors provide counseling at no direct cost to the business owners.

According to a study published in 2007 by the US Small Business Administration Office of Advocacy, small firm establishment births have a larger impact than any other factor examined on gross state product (GSP), state personal income (SPI), and total state employment.  The key finding suggests that economic growth will be faster when the net small firm establishment birth rate is positive.  They conclude that state efforts to promote small business formation are more fruitful for generating economic growth than virtually any other policy option.

In 2008 the OSBDCN counseled 5,782 clients statewide. 44% of these clients were pre-venture entrepreneurs working on their business plans and raising start-up capital. 56% (3,238) established their businesses; most of these firms (2,240) were in the 0-5 employee range. The balance of clients included 458 businesses with 5-50 employees, and 14 businesses with 50-500 employees.  In 2008 OSBDCN clients received a total of $48,156,140 in debt and equity financing, started 372 new businesses, and increased their sales by $44,280,331.

Our clients’ successes depend upon consistent, high-quality counseling throughout our Network.  Palo Alto Software has generously supported both the Oregon Small Business Development Center Network and our national Association of Small Business Development Centers with contributions of software and training.  These quality tools are substantial in assisting our success with clients.  In providing our thanks,  the following video link is intended to share in our mutual efforts to assist small business success and will be updated monthly to provide demonstration that together we can make a difference and achieve small business prosperity.

Mark Gregory
Associate State Director
Oregon Small Business Development Center Network

We’d like to thank Mark Gregory and the new State Director,  Mike Lainoff,  for the opportunity to share these Oregon success stories with you.

‘Chelle Parmele
Palo Alto Software