Mississippi Gulf Coast/Delta Alliance for Economic Inclusion to host small business conference at Mississippi e-Center@JSU

Spencer McClenty

The Mississippi Gulf Coast/Delta Alliance for Economic Inclusion (AEI) will host its second statewide small business conference from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Wednesday, June 8, at the Mississippi e-Center@JSU, located at 1230 Raymond Road in Jackson. The AEI is a coalition of more than 60 financial institutions, small business resource groups, governmental agencies, and other community based organizations who work together to address key economic issues and other disaster recovery problems facing small businesses in Mississippi. The coalition also seeks to bring more of the unbanked and under-banked populations into the financial mainstream.

“This conference is yet another means by which Mississippi’s small, minority, women-owned and veteran-owned businesses may receive first-hand information from experts about how to start, enhance and grow their businesses,” said Janita R. Stewart, district director of the Mississippi District Office of the U.S. Small Business Administration.

         The conference, themed “Accessing Opportunities for Growth,” will cover a variety of topics relevant to the start-up or expansion of small businesses. It also will offer information to banks and credit unions interested in increasingtheir small business portfolios and exploring strategies for greater market access and business opportunities for Mississippi’s small businesses.

     “There is a multitude of public and private sector organizations throughout our state that will take the time out to participate in this very important conference,” Stewart said. “We certainly hope that our small businesses will do the same.”

Topics and activities during the one-day workshop include:
• Marketing 101: Social Media Marketing and Technology for Your Small Business
• Tax Incentives/Professional Services for Your Small Business
• Creating and Maintaining Business Credit and Improving Your Credit Score
• Financing Your Small Business – Alternatives to Traditional Banks
• Traditional Banking Products and Services: What Are the Options? Where Do You Start?
• Strength in Diversity – Doing Business with the Corporate and Public Sector
• To Catch a Thief: Establishing Internal Controls to Eliminate Theft
• Small Business Resources Roundtable
• Small Business Expo and Exhibits
• Keynote Luncheon featuring William Cooley, Ph.D., CEO, Systems Consultants, Inc.

The event is sponsored in part by the Jackson State University Center for Business Development and Economic Research and Small Business Development Center, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Comptroller of the Currency, BankPlus, BancorpSouth, the Mississippi Development Authority, Regions Bank, Trustmark Bank, Whitney Bank, First Commercial Bank, Metropolitan Bank, MINCAP, Hope Credit Union, Entergy, and the City of Jackson.

Registration will begin at 7:30 a.m. The cost to attend is $35, which includes continental breakfast, a luncheon and breaks. To view a full conference agenda, register online, or download a registration form, visit http://2011msaeismallbusinessconference.eventbrite.com/. For more information contact Patricia Chaffin at 601- 979-2029.


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