Stephanie Koczela arrived in the San Francisco Bay Area in 2010, when everyone was moving fast and breaking things. She had been working for the microlender Kiva in Nairobi, Kenya, and transferred to the company’s South of Market headquarters to build its global field operations. For an ambitious twentysomething with an interest in development issues, it seemed like a dream job.
While the business financing climate is looking better these days, it is sad to note that 35% or approximately 8 million of small businesses failed to access additional capital in 2013, according to a report published by the National Small Business Association. To help this group, the SBA recently launched LINC, an online tool designed to help business owners gain access to additional capital for their business.
Small businesses are America’s backbone and the key building blocks for the economy and our society. They account for 99.7 percent of all businesses in America
and employ about half of the private sector workforce, paying 42 percent
of all payroll. Here, Teresa Coaxum, Office of Advocacy’s regional advocate for New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, talks about barriers, best practices and big ideas.
In a world where you can crowdfund even your craziest idea and then build it yourself with a desktop 3-D printer, some of the hottest new gadgets, devices and technologies are coming from garage inventors.