Welcome Letters from Hosts
San Francisco Small Business Week is a partnership that honors and supports San Francisco’s small businesses through a series of educational and networking events that inspire, educate and connect the business community. This event is part of a national celebration of the contribution of small businesses and entrepreneurs. San Francisco takes great pride in being the home to over 85,000 small and new startup businesses.
The 14th Annual San Francisco Small Business Week is presented by Bank of America and produced in partnership with the City and County of San Francisco, Golden Gate Business Association, Golden Gate Restaurant Association, Main Street Launch, MEDA, NAWBO, Office of the Mayor, Office of Small Business, Pacific Community Ventures, Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center, San Francisco African American Chamber of Commerce, San Francisco Chamber of Commerce, San Francisco Economic Development Alliance, San Francisco Small Business Development Center, Small Business Administration, Small Business Commission, Straus Events and USF Gellert Family Business Resource Center.
It is with great pleasure that I invite you to the 14th annual San Francisco Small Business Week. Each year, we come together to recognize and celebrate the San Francisco entrepreneurial community. Our small businesses are job creators, valuable innovators and the foundation of San Francisco’s innovative and creative spirit.
Your success builds upon our prosperity and contributes to the character of our beautiful city. It is this character that inspired creation of the first pair of blue jeans, the cable car, slot machines, the waterbed and community banking partnerships.
I am proud that our rich and collaborative environment helps small businesses start, stay and grow here in San Francisco. The City and County of San Francisco has a variety of services and programs to support you in opening and operating a business. With the Office of Small Business, you can connect to one-on-one assistance, receive help with navigating regulatory requirements and learn more about San Francisco’s unique labor laws. The Invest in Neighborhoods team continues to provide access to tailored tools, such as technical assistance, grants, loans and other resources to help businesses better serve the needs of their communities, and we honor our legacy businesses by placing them on a Legacy Business Registry.
So to all San Franciscans—please join me in recognizing San Francisco Small Business Week 2018! The Office of Small Business and the Small Business Committee have lined up an exciting week of events and activities and I urge you to take advantage of the valuable workshops and networking opportunities that are available. Let’s celebrate small business this week and every week!
Greetings from Bank of America Small Business Regional Executive Emily Shanks
2018 marks the fifth straight year that Bank of America is the presenting sponsor of the annual San Francisco Small Business Week. We are honored to participate in this celebration for the community of entrepreneurs that keeps San Francisco a thriving marketplace.
Bank of America serves small business owners in San Francisco and across the country through what we call Bank of America Business Advantage. The name Business Advantage reflects our commitment to meet your evolving needs, giving small business owners a competitive advantage – with people, technology and solutions that help you achieve smart growth that lasts. Our Business Advantage comes to life across California through:
• Lending – We offer flexible funding options, including Business Advantage Term Loan and Business Advantage Credit Line. The latter offers amounts from $10,000 to $100,000 with no interest until the funds are used to help small business owners manage larger expenses. In 2017, Bank of America provided more than $2.3 billion in new credit to small businesses in California. Total small business lending in California was more than $5.3 billion.
• Local partnerships – Bank of America understands the power of local connections and is dedicated to partnering with neighborhoods and communities across the country. Bank of America is the largest investor in community development financial institutions (CDFIs), with more than $1.5 billion in investments to more than 260 CDFIs in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
• Expertise and guidance – We continue to expand our commitment to provide local expertise and guidance for small business owners across California. Currently, there are approximately 480 Bank of America small business bankers throughout the state. Having a dedicated team means customers have convenient access to local specialists who can provide guidance and insights to help them understand the marketplace and make better decisions for their businesses.
We are proud to serve as a sponsor and look forward to another great San Francisco Small Business Week. We hope you take full advantage of the many opportunities to connect with and be inspired by other successful small business owners.
Thanks for continuing to help the Bay Area succeed!
Small Business Banking Regional Executive
Bank of America
Greetings from San Francisco Chamber of Commerce President & CEO Tallia Hart
It is my pleasure to welcome you to San Francisco Small Business Week.
Small businesses are the heart of our business community, with more than 85,000 small businesses and entrepreneurs calling San Francisco home. They bring vitality, diversity and jobs to our neighborhoods, and we work hard to support them.
More than half of Americans either own or work for a small business, and they create about two out of every three new jobs in the U.S. every year. You are essential to our thriving economy, and I thank you for helping make San Francisco a leader in business.
The San Francisco Chamber of Commerce is dedicated to being a resource for small businesses. With more than 250 programs and events, we deliver a robust roster of opportunities for you to make connections and build business relationships throughout the year. The Chamber provides leadership on key local, state and federal issues important to the business community, and takes collective action to advance sustainable economic growth and a better San Francisco.
I encourage you to engage and connect with us and the broader San Francisco business community.
Because together, we are stronger!
President & CEO
San Francisco Chamber of Commerce