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FloridaCommerce Recognizes Small Business Week in Florida

More New Business Formations in Florida Than Any Other State in the Nation

Tallahassee, FL – FloridaCommerce celebrates Small Business Week in Florida by recognizing the vital contributions of entrepreneurs and small business owners in their communities. In 2024 alone, 163,992 new businesses have formed in Florida, more than any other state in the nation. Of Florida’s 529,072 private sector businesses, 99.7 percent employ less than 500 employees, which represents 56.9 percent of the state’s total private sector employment.

On April 30, 2024, Governor DeSantis declared the week of April 28 - May 4, 2024, National Small Business Week in Florida.

Under Governor DeSantis’ leadership, Florida is an economic model for the nation by prioritizing high-skilled jobs and incentivizing businesses to move here,” said Florida Secretary of Commerce J. Alex Kelly. “These key initiatives are proving successful for both job seekers and job creators. We are proud to celebrate Small Business Week again alongside our economic partners.”

“I am proud of Florida’s partnerships, as we continue to work together to help more small businesses access the resources they need to grow and achieve their business goals,” said Greg Britton, state director of the Florida Small Business Development Centers Network. “Our state's small business owners create jobs, transform communities, and stimulate economic growth. Today is a great excuse to celebrate and honor our state's small businesses as part of National Small Business Week for the crucial part they play.”

“We are proud to celebrate Small Business Week alongside our many economic partners throughout the state,” Kevin Carr, Chief Executive Officer of FloridaMakes. “The manufacturing industry plays an important role in all aspects of our lives and therefore, we must continue to increase the awareness of the importance of manufacturing and making things.”

"Thanks to the leadership of Governor DeSantis for his continued partnership and investment in Florida's rural communities,” said Janice Mortimer, Chair of the North Central Florida Regional Planning Council. “Having partners across the state ensures that Florida’s rural counties are well positioned to continue attracting high-quality jobs and economic growth.”

“Here in North Central Florida, we continue to see growth year after year thanks to Governor DeSantis’ strategic initiatives,” said Thomas Lanahan Executive Director Treasure Coast Regional Planning. “With the support from the State of Florida our local small businesses have access to capital to help them grow and expand, which benefits our local economy and the families that reside here.”

Resources available for Florida’s small businesses include:

  • State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI) – In just one year, Florida provided more than $149 million in loans and venture capital investments for small business to 105 Florida small businesses stimulating more than $554 million in private capital that has created or retained nearly 3,830 jobs for Floridians.
  • Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program – In October 2022, Governor DeSantis activated the Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program in response to the impact of Hurricane Ian. FloridaCommerce assisted 907 businesses by loaning more than $37.5 million to help businesses expedite their recovery efforts following Hurricane Ian.
  • Black Business Loan Program (BBLP) – BBLP provides alternative lending opportunities and technical assistance to black business enterprises that cannot obtain capital through conventional lending institutions but could otherwise compete successfully in the private sector.
  • The Rebuild Florida Business Loan Fund – The Rebuild Florida Business Loan Fund, which has $50 million available to assist businesses statewide with economic development and resiliency, focuses on creating and enhancing the diversification and resiliency of Florida’s economy. Its purpose is to address the current gap in available, affordable capital for businesses by providing longer term loans with higher funding levels at market interest rates.
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