Area small businesses aided by organizations
There are various tools to help small business owners begin or expand their operations, it’s just a matter of finding them.

Mohawk Valley EDGE, SUNY-IT and the Mohawk Valley, Herkimer County and Rome Area chambers of commerce are just some of the organizations that help small businesses.

With an uncertain economy in New York, small business owners are facing more of an uphill battle than ever, leaders of chambers said.

“What smaller businesses need around here is larger businesses to come in so they can sell their products or services to them,” said Matt Stubley, executive director of the Herkimer Chamber of Commerce.

Stubley said health insurance is a hindrance to smaller businesses staying competitive, not only in the Mohawk Valley, but nationally as well.

Such matters are covered in monthly seminars conducted by the Mohawk Valley Chamber of Commerce’s small business council.

Some small businesses can’t afford to hire consultation, and the seminars give them direction in human resource issues, marketing and financing, said Tom Owens, chairman of the council.

“Basically we are looking to serve the needs of the small business community through seminars and programs designed to educate and help them succeed,” Owens said.

The Small Business Development Center also offers 25 to 30 seminars annually free of charge, said Dave Mallen, executive director of the center.

“The primary challenge for small business owners is raising the necessary funding capital to get the business off the ground or in some cases expand,” Mallen said. “We try to help owners achieve this.”

Robert Duchow, spokesman for Mohawk Valley EDGE, said the organization also tries to help small business owners.

Last month, EDGE conducted a seminar called “Sources for Financing for Your Small Business.”

It’s these types of programs that make small business owners in the Mohawk Valley aware of the options they have, Duchow said.

The seminar is the second in a series of monthly seminars taking place through June sponsored by EDGE, the Mohawk Valley Chamber of Commerce, Small Business Development Center and the Mohawk Valley Society for Human Resource Management.

“We just want to provide and share information to educate small business owners about things they may not know about,” Duchow said.

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