Georgia Lands $16M in Federal Funding for Small Businesses

Staff Report From Georgia CEO

Friday, July 31st, 2015

The U.S. Treasury Department today announced that Georgia has received $16,254,892 in State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI) funds to help small businesses access the capital they need to grow and create jobs. To date, $47,808,507 in SSBCI funds have been disbursed to the Georgia Department of Community Affairs (DCA) to support businesses and the local economy.

“Small businesses are the nation’s leading job creators, and the State Small Business Credit Initiative connects sources of capital to the small businesses that need it,” said Jeffrey Stout, director of SSBCI. “The funds announced today will continue to support loans and investments in Georgia’s small businesses.”

SSBCI’s most recent Quarterly Report shows that Georgia has deployed nearly $29 million in SSBCI funds and is among the states that have deployed the most SSBCI funds by dollar amount. Through 2014, business owners in Georgia reported that the program will help them create or retain 2,314 jobs. 

“With SSBCI funding, Georgia has been able to assist 280 small businesses throughout the state, most of whom fall into the underserved markets in Georgia. Included are small businesses such as nail and hair salons, landscaping and construction businesses as well as professional and technical firms, medical and veterinary clinics, manufacturing businesses, and locally-owned hotels and restaurants,” said Holly Hunt, Georgia’s SSBCI program manager at DCA.

One such small business in Georgia is a woman-owned enterprise in Savannah. Stephanie Britt founded Cheer Savannah in 2000 and built her company and her cheer teams from the ground up. She started her practice before cheerleading was recognized as a competitive sport. She is now known as one of the premier cheerleading coaches in the state. She is certified by the U.S. All-Star Federation and is flown all over the nation and Canada to train and certify instructors in cheer programs.

Britt came to the Small Business Assistance Corporation (SBAC) to obtain funding to build a new training facility for her operations. The vacant lot adjacent to her current facility had become available for sale. 

“She saw the opportunity to have a facility for her students that provided an improved training and exercise space. The current building that she was leasing had its drawbacks,” said Hunt. “The space was too small to house the needed number of practice groups and the ceilings were too low, making practice with specialized equipment difficult.”

In a partnership with Sea Island Bank and the Savannah Regional Small Business Capital Fund, the SBAC funded a $1,100,000 project with the assistance of $330,000 in SSBCI support to purchase the lot and build Cheer Savannah’s new facility. The larger facility has four full-size practice floors, including a spring floor, with room for tumbling and strength classes with trampolines beside each mat.

The Treasury Department has disbursed more than $1.2 billion in SSBCI funds to participating states since the beginning of the program. SSBCI is designed to help spur new private sector lending or investments in small companies by leveraging the federal support offered by the program. Through 2014, states were able to generate $7.36 in private sector lending and investments for every $1 of federal support.

SSBCI was created by the Small Business Jobs Act on September 27, 2010. Through SSBCI, the Treasury Department will award nearly $1.5 billion to state programs across the country that support small businesses, including small manufacturers. Each state designs its own small business programs, and Georgia has established capital access, loan participation, and loan guarantee programs. 

To build on the momentum of the program’s success and capitalize on new working relationships among states and small business lenders and investors, President Obama proposed an extension of SSBCI in his Fiscal Year 2016 Budget request with an additional $1.5 billion in funding. A new authorization of the SSBCI program will keep local economic development efforts strong and allow states to continue supporting small businesses, job creation, and greater levels of private lending and investments.

For more information on SSBCI and Treasury’s other small business programs, please visit For more information on Georgia’s SSBCI program, please visit  or