10,000 Small Businesses R.I. program accepting 10th cohort applications

Updated at 3:32 p.m.

THE 10,000 SMALL BUSINESSES Rhode Island program is accepting applications for its tenth cohort. The program has had 227 Rhode Island small businesses participate in the program over its three years of operation.
THE 10,000 SMALL BUSINESSES Rhode Island program is accepting applications for its tenth cohort. The program has had 227 Rhode Island small businesses participate in the program over its three years of operation.

WARWICK – The Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Rhode Island program is accepting applications for its fall cohort.

Applications are due by June 1, but Karina H. Wood, executive director of the Rhode Island 10,000 Small Businesses program at the Community College of Rhode Island, told PBN Friday that she advises that companies apply early.

The primary application is quick, just to determine if a company is eligible, Wood said, designed not to waste time of companies that would not qualify for the program. Companies that do qualify will then be asked to fill out a more detailed interview application.

Wood said that the program is designed to accommodate a diverse range of businesses across various sectors, with a range of employees and in various stages of business life.

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“Its not just for early stage businesses,” Wood said, “it’s for any business. … You could be in business two years or you could be a 100-year-old business.”

Wood said that the no-cost program has worked with companies with as few as two employees up to a couple hundred, adding that the diversity of the program allows it to thrive. Nationally, 88 percent of 10,000 Small Businesses participants end up doing business with other graduates.

The Rhode Island program, going on its third year, has worked with 227 small businesses looking to increase their revenue, including 189 graduates and the 38 participants in the current eighth cohort. Wood said that the organization is currently conducting interviews for the program’s ninth cohort.

The fall participants will be the program’s 10th cohort. The program is currently operating on a five-year grant from the Goldman Sachs Foundation.

Nationally, 67 percent of participants reported increasing revenue after graduation. Goldman Sachs also said that 47 percent of graduates reported creating new jobs six months after the program.

The completion rate was said to be 98 percent. The Rhode Island program figures were said to be in line with national averages.

The requirements of the Rhode Island program are:

  • Must be an owner or co-owner of a Rhode Island-headquartered business
  • The business must have been in operation for at least two years
  • Business revenue must exceed $100,000 in the most recent fiscal year
  • The business must have a minimum of two employees (including the owner)

More information about the program may be found on the CCRI website.

Chris Bergenheim is the PBN web editor. Email him at Bergenheim@PBN.com.