10,000 Small Businesses Program Helps Grow Local Businesses
The Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program has been providing training and support to small business owners, including many in Summit County, for several years.
Park City resident Jon Beutler is the alumni manager for the 10,000 small businesses program. he explains what the program is.
“So, this is a program that’s sponsored by Goldman Sachs. A few years ago, they realized that small businesses need three things. They need access to capital, they need education and they need some sort of mentors or advisors to help them move along. Goldman Sachs invested $500,000,000 into this program. They are working with Babson College on a curriculum. Babson College, as you may know, has been the number one entrepreneur school in the nation for twenty-something years now. So, they developed a curriculum specifically for small businesses and we are one of 14 community colleges or cities, throughout the nation that deliver the program.”
The program works through Salt Lake Community College and runs for about four months.
“It’s open to residents of the state of Utah. We also have a national blended program for people that live outside of the area that don’t want to make the drive. It’s a pretty robust program, you’re in the class 10 full days spread over 16 weeks and then we have four additional workshops. You spend about 110 hours in a classroom and then in-between classes you meet with an advisor to help push your company along. The purpose of the program is you develop a growth plan or a growth strategy. So it’s similar to a business plan except it has dates, timelines, people associated with it and it’s more of an action plan.”
Beutler says the qualifications for the program is that your company must be in business for at least two years, have $150,000 minimum annual revenue, and have a minimum of four employees. Several local companies have gone through the program.
“We track these companies for 30 months after they graduate. I talk to them six months, 18 months and 30 months and we get metrics. Typically, we really focus on job creation and revenue growth. Right now, the numbers are 80% of the graduates have increased revenues within six months 50% have increased jobs as well. There have been over 40 companies that have gone through the program from Park City. Panic Button Media, Top Shelf with Casey Metzger over there, Mountain Town Olive Oil. Recently, Freshies Lobster came through, Silver Star Café, Podium Ski Service, Destination Suites, Black Diamond Gym. We’ve got a lot, they are all still in business and doing well.”
Beutler also says they are launching another program, the pilot was conducted in Park City.
“We just launched another program for companies that aren’t quite at $150,000 (annual revenue) and we just did a pilot in Park City. (We) just finished that up and now we’re getting approval from the college to go ahead and roll that out. That’s called the Everyday Entrepreneur program and so I’ve been working with PandoLabs on that and we hope to have another class. We had nine people start, six people graduated, and we also have a seed fund. Two of those companies received money from the college to launch their companies. We’ll be launching our new cohort in October, so we’ll be looking for companies that are really interested in starting a business or if they’re just starting out it’s a great program.”
Alumni of the organization are invited to an event featuring guest speaker Rob Bruce, a former Nike Creative Director who is launching his own small company.