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UTSA Hosts Delegation from the Inter-American Development Bank to Discuss SBDC Model

UTSA Hosts Delegation from the Inter-American Development Bank to Discuss SBDC Model

(October 11, 2013)The International Trade Center at The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) Institute of Economic Development announced today that it hosted a three-day visit by Inter-American Development Bank delegates. The visit provided an opportunity to demonstrate the work that the Institute and its centers are doing to create economic impact in Texas and internationally. There is particular focus on the Small Business Development Center (SBDC) expansion projects that the International Trade Center has been engaged in since 2003 through its SBDCGlobal program with the aim of establishing SBDC networks throughout the Americas and North Africa.

Since 1979, The Institute for Economic Development at UTSA has hosted various economic development programs as well as SBDCs that provide training, business advising services and research to businesses in order to create economic impact in the region. These SBDCs are part of a network established throughout the U.S. by the federal government in partnership with state governments and universities and colleges, assist entrepreneurs and business owners in establishing and growing their businesses through a free and confidential suite of advising services. Services include, but are not limited to, feasibility studies, business strategy, financial planning, marketing, production and professional networking. The Centers support new and existing businesses.

The Inter-American Development Bank was established in 1959, and is the leading source of development financing for Latin America and the Caribbean. They provide grants, technical assistance and do research and whose shareholders comprise 48 member countries, including 26 Latin American and Caribbean borrowing members, who have a majority ownership of the Inter-American Development Bank.

The goal of the October 9-11 visit is to gain Inter-American Development Bank support of the SBDC model expansion to help Latin American and Caribbean governments with financial assistance to launch their national SBDC networks so they can properly structure and fund their centers and allow these networks to be sustainable and viable over the long-term.

UTSA Associate Vice President of Economic Development, Robert McKinley, and South-West Texas Border SBDC Network Director, Al Salgado, are leading the visit. Delegates from the Inter-American Development Bank include Juan Jose Llisterri, Gustavo Crespi, Gabriel Casaburi, and Gonzalo Rivas. Presentations by center directors, staff as well as guests from the governors’ office and stakeholders from the US SBA will help to illuminate the value proposition of the SBDC model and the plan to develop more US modeled networks abroad.

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