WASHINGTON – Rhode Island will receive $412,000 from the U.S. Small Business Administration as part of the second round of funding from the State Trade Export Promotion program.
Rhode Island is one of forty-seven states, Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, the U.S. Virgin Islands and the District of Columbia receiving a total $30 million from the Small Business Administration.
The Ocean State’s $412,000 in funding is earmarked to help continue to run the STEP program out of the Chafee Center for International Business at Bryant University, which will be responsible for the day-to-day management and administration of the program.
“With 95 percent of the world’s consumers living outside of the United States, exporting gives small businesses the opportunity to reach new markets, increase sales and create jobs,” SBA Administrator Karen Mills said in a statement. “The second round of STEP funding will be instrumental in helping small businesses start or expand their exporting opportunities so they can create an economy built to last.”
The STEP initiative launched in 2011 under the Small Business Jobs Act with two goals: to increase the number of small businesses that want to export and to increase the value of exports for those small businesses that currently export.
“The STEP program funding is vital to small business in Rhode Island as they look to find ways to expand their business and their borders” SBA Rhode Island District Director Mark S. Hayward said in prepared remarks. “These funds, coupled with the expertise of Chafee Center, help open new doors to international markets for our local business owners.”