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Northwest Missouri State University


News Release

Dec. 17, 2012

Local SBTDC assistance makes noticeable impact on northwest Missouri

In the past year, the assistance provided by the Northwest Small Business and Technology Development Center has made a favorable impact on small businesses – and the economy – in northwest Missouri, including the creation of 21 new businesses.

In addition to the creation of new businesses, Larry Lee, director of the Northwest SBTDC, reported that, in fiscal year 2012 (October 2011 to September 2012), the businesses the center assisted:

  • created or retained 357 jobs in northwest Missouri;
  • experienced an increase in sales of $15.8 million; and
  • received loans and investments totaling $14.1 million.

“The goal of the SBTDC is to help business owners and potential entrepreneurs meet today’s competitive challenges,” Lee said. “While these numbers are favorable, we have set our sights on an 8 percent increase for FY13, and we are committed to reaching – or even surpassing – that goal.”

The region’s SBTDC is operated by Northwest Missouri State University with offices in Maryville, St. Joseph and Chillicothe, serving an 18-county area. Lee is located at the regional office, on the Northwest campus in Maryville. Steve Holt oversees an office in Chillicothe that serves the eastern portion of the region while Rebecca Evans operates an office in St. Joseph to serve the southern section.

“This is a tremendous example of a value-add service Northwest Missouri State provides to fuel our region’s growth,” said Northwest President Dr. John Jasinski. “The results are clear that we are assisting the region’s small businesses and business owners, and this is but one example of how we help contribute to economic development.”

Like other SBTDC centers located throughout the United States at institutions of higher learning, the center is focused on economic development assistance for businesses with fewer than 500 employees. More specifically, the Northwest SBTDC provides individual business counseling to small business owners and individuals throughout northwest Missouri, coordinates and conducts research related to technical and general small business problems, and conducts conferences and workshops on topics of interest to small business owners.

“I think it’s important to keep in mind how closely tied we all are to the region’s economy – regardless of our line of work,” Lee said. “For instance, at Northwest Missouri State University, if the economic development in our catchment area weakens or even stalls, it could certainly have an adverse impact on the ability of citizens to pursue higher education and the institution’s ability to provide a robust academic experience to students. With that in mind, it’s imperative that we all take ownership in supporting area businesses and entrepreneurs and be strong advocates for this region of the state.”

Lee joined Northwest in February as director of business development and tenant relations of the University’s Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and shortly thereafter began the oversight of the Northwest SBTDC and its three offices.

“In the past year, we have really come together as a team, and a structure has been put in place that allows us to work with small business owners to make a significant impact to our region’s economy,” Lee said.

The SBTDC, funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration, has developed and cultivated relationships with partners such as the Missouri Department of Economic Development, the state Legislature, area Chambers of Commerce and economic developers throughout the region.

For more information about the Northwest Small Business and Technology Development Center, contact Larry Lee at 660.562.1701, Steve Holt at 660.646.6920 or Rebecca Evans at 816.232.4461.

For more information, please contact:

Mark Hornickel, Media Relations Specialist
mhorn@nwmissouri.edu | 660.562.1704 | Fax: 660.562.1900

Northwest Missouri State University
215 Administration Building | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468