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SBA: North Florida District increases lending for exporters by 169%

The Small Business Administration (SBA) is placing emphasis on helping small business exporters grow. This emphasis on exporting is consistent with President Obama’s National Export Initiative, which seeks to double the number of firms exporting as well as give Americans a competitive advantage in the global marketplace.

SBA recently announced the State Trade and Export Promotion Grant (STEP) Pilot Grant Initiative, which will provide grants to states for small business exporting assistance programs. The STEP grant for Florida is administered through the State’s Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Network and Enterprise Florida, Inc. Information related to the types of activities that may be funded through this grant can be found at

In addition to the STEP Grant, the SBA also offers three export loan programs including the Export Express Loan Program, Export Working Capital Program, and the International Trade Loan Program. General information about these programs is available at

Wilfredo J. Gonzalez, district director recently said, “Exporting is an important function in the North Florida economy. Our district office encompasses major seaports and international airports, which facilitates the business of exporting. We encourage those small businesses that are interested in exporting for the first time or hoping to increase their options to use the resources available to them through the SBA and our resource partners.”

The North Florida District Office expanded opportunities for small businesses by guaranteeing export loans in the amount of $30.4M in Fiscal Year 2011. This is a 169% increase from Fiscal year 2010 export lending, which totaled $11.3M for the district. Certain Counties in the district experienced significant gains in the amount of export lending, as seen below:

2010 2011
DUVAL 5 $3,177,600 DUVAL 5 $5,705,000
LAKE 1 $25,000 LAKE 2 $375,000
NASSAU 2 $12,500 NASSAU 1 $500,000
ORANGE 15 $5,437,500 ORANGE 22 $14,599,500
SEMINOLE 1 $136,000 SEMINOLE 4 $2,128,000

For more information on export lending programs in the North Florida District Office, contact a Lender Relations Specialist at 904-443-1900.

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