• Florida SBDC Network Urges Preparation for Hurricane Season

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    May 22, 2019
     
     
    Media Contact
    Dianne Hafleigh
    (850) 898-3486
    Dianne.Hafleigh@FloridaSBDC.org
     
    News Release
    May 22, 2019
    For Immediate Release
     
     
    Florida SBDC Network Urges Preparation for Hurricane Season
    State’s Principal Provider of Business Assistance Advises Preparedness as Season Approaches
     
     
    Florida SBDC Network Headquarters (Pensacola, Fla.) – The Florida SBDC Network, the state’s principal provider of business assistance, urges small business owners across the state to prepare for the 2019 Atlantic basin hurricane season, which begins June 1 and extends through November 30.
     
    According to a forecast by Colorado State University (CSU), the 2019 Atlantic hurricane season is predicted to be slightly below-average, with 13 named storms, five hurricanes, and two major hurricanes. CSU will release its next seasonal update on June 4.
     
    In 2018, four named storms impacted the U.S. coast, including Hurricane Michael, a Category 5 storm which caused $18.4 billion in estimated losses in Florida and severe devastation for thousands of small businesses.
     
     
    “Florida has experienced three particularly devastating hurricane seasons,” said Michael W. Myhre, CEO of the Florida SBDC Network. “All businesses should take time now to understand the risks associated with hurricanes and to develop a preparedness plan no matter the forecast.”
     
    Established in 1976, the Florida SBDC Network has more than 40 offices from Pensacola to Key West. As a principal responder in the state’s Emergency Support Function (ESF) 18 for Business & Industry, the Florida SBDC Network is a key economic development organization that supports disaster preparedness, recovery, and mitigation through its Business Continuation services.
     
     
    Small business owner Joshua Street gets help from consultant Johnny Branch in the Florida SBDC Network emergency response Mobile Assistance Center (MAC) after Hurricane Michael destroyed his office in Panama City, Florida. (Michael Spooneybarger/ UWF Division of Research and Strategic Innovation)
     
     
    Through the network’s service offering, professionally certified business consultants can help small business owners develop comprehensive business continuity, emergency preparedness, and disaster recovery plans at no cost.
    
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    About the Florida SBDC Network:
    For over forty years, the Florida SBDC Network, the state’s principal provider of business assistance [Fl. Stat. 288.001], has nourished a statewide partnership between higher education and economic development to provide existing and aspiring small and medium-sized business owners with management and knowledge resources that enable overall growth, increased profitability, and economic prosperity for Florida’s economy. 
     
    Since 2011, Florida SBDCs have provided 624,331 hours of professional business consulting to 58,975 client businesses, resulting in 281,831 jobs impacted; $36.7 billion in sales generated; $2.7 billion in government contracts acquired; $1.6 billion in capital accessed; and 4,520 new businesses started. 
     
    A statewide network of over 40 offices, the Florida SBDC is funded in part by the U.S. Small Business Administration, Defense Logistics Agency, State of Florida and other private and public partners. The Florida SBDC Network, headquartered at the University of West Florida, is nationally accredited by the Association of America's SBDCs and is a 2016 recipient of the President’s E Award for Export Service.
     
     
    www.FloridaSBDC.org
     
     
    Contact:
    Kelly Massey, Executive Director
    (850) 474-2528