LAREDO–Today, the office of Congressman Henry Cuellar (TX-28) in collaboration with the TAMIU Small Business Development Center, hosted the ‘Access to Capital’ Forum and Small Business Resource fair to promote resources for business financing. This event took place at Texas A&M International University, and it brought together business owners and community members of LaSalle, Webb and Zapata counties that are looking to start or expand their business. This provided them with an opportunity to learn more about federal and private financing resources from financial institutions in Laredo.
“Small businesses are the backbone of our economy,” said Congressman Cuellar. “It is a pleasure to work with the Small Business Administration and the Small Business Development Center to coordinate events such as ‘Access to Capital’ to bring together business owners, federal agencies, and constituents interested in starting their entrepreneurial career.
Congressman Cuellar continued, “As a former small business owner, I know the challenges of opening a business, including finding the resources and funds to get started, and just as important, how to the keep the business running. This is why this ‘Access to Capital’ event is so crucial. Having exposure to different resources, such as federal funding and counseling, is key. I also understand how difficult it can be to comply with burdensome regulations while staying afloat. The need for credit to keep your doors open and support your employees’ jobs is also critical. This year, I helped secure funding that will help eliminate heavy burdens and increase job growth in the 28th district. It will also alleviate regulations on small financial institutions, increase trade with other countries, and lower prices for consumer goods.”
He added, “I want to thank all the organizations that made this event possible, including the TAMIU Small Business Development Center, the U.S. Small Business Administration and Laredo financial institutions.”
Michael Gonzalez, Director of the TAMIU Small Business Development Center said, “Events like these are critical to the continued growth of our South Texas Economy. Remember, when we mention small business, that is defined as businesses with 500 employees or less, which encompass most of Laredo’s businesses.”
He added, “Bottom line, small business is not small. In fact, this information stands to help just about anyone who has questions on how to access capital. Many thanks to Congressman Cuellar and all of our partners for their work in bringing this event to the community.”
Top photo: Attendees and panelists at the Access to Capital event at TAMIU on Tuesday
Bottom photo pictured from left to right: Senior Vice President of Falcon International Bank Jose Zuniga, International Bank of Commerce Executive Vice President of Commercial Lending Edward Farias, Director of the TAMIU SBDC Mike Gonzalez, U.S. Small Business Administration Public Affairs Specialist Nina Ramon, BBVA Compass Bank Business Banking Officer David Dodier, Peoplefund Director of Lending Jemerell Rogers, and Outreach Coordinator Francis Atwell