Capital Region Small Business Development Center opens in Richmond area
Will assist business owners around region
Now part of the state’s Small Business Development Center (SBDC) network, the Capital Region SBDC opened this month to assist Richmond-area small business owners, Virginia Community Capital announced Monday.
Funded by the U.S. Small Business Administration with $192,000 in CARES Act money, plus matching grant funds from regional sources, the center will provide COVID-19 assistance, business counseling, development workshops, challenge programs and digital resources. It will serve businesses in Chesterfield, Goochland, Hanover, Henrico, New Kent and Powhatan counties, as well as the city of Richmond and the town of Ashland.
Local governments, as well as Atlantic Union Bank and Region 4 of GO Virginia, are supporting the center, which is seeking members for a regional advisory board.
The opening is a reboot of ChamberRVA’s Greater Richmond Small Business Development Center, which operated from 1998 to 2018, assisting more than 20,000 businesses and facilitating $334.1 million in capital investment, according to VCC, a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) with offices in Christiansburg, Norfolk and Richmond. The new center, unlike its previous incarnation, will be connected to the statewide SBDC network, which has 26 centers.
Ryann Lofchie, former CEO of Richmond-based consulting firm The Frontier Project, was recently named director of the Capital Region SBDC, which will be located in Henrico County.
“This is an exciting starting point,” she said in a statement. “Richmond is such a vibrant place to live, and we owe so much of our region’s growth and evolution to our local small businesses. During this time of economic uncertainty and disruption, many business owners are in need extra support and resources. The SBDC and its extensive network of partners are well-poised to be responsive to the needs of our entrepreneurial and small business community to ensure our region continues to thrive.”