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Big Bank Partnership Could Payoff For SMB Owners

Written by Ken Gaebler
Published: 11/18/2009

Goldman Sachs and Buffett devote millions to assisting SMB owners.

The latest headlines about the strongest bank in the industry could be good news for small business owners. Goldman Sachs is partnering with billionaire Warren Buffett in a philanthropic effort called 10,000 Small Businesses.

Entrepreneur Finance News

The project includes a $200 million donation to community colleges to give grants to small business owners to further their education, as well as an investment of $300 million through a combination of lending and charitable support.

In addition, Goldman Sachs executives will partner with national and local business organizations to provide small businesses advice, technical assistance and professional networking opportunities.

David Viniar, Goldman's chief financial officer, recently told the New York Times the bank regrets mistakes made leading up to the financial crisis. He says the bank is now "very focused on the economic climate" and hopes their 10,000 Small Businesses plan demonstrates a commitment to financial responsibility.

Buffett agrees that the investment is good business."Our recovery is dependent on hard working small business owners across America who will create the jobs that America needs," he said.

The promise of advice and technical assistance may be more helpful to SMB owners than the money itself; the Kauffman Foundation reports that 73 percent of successful entrepreneurs said professional networks were most important to the success of their current businesses.

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