small businesses

Courtesy photo | SCORE

For 38 years, a group of retired and active business professionals have been providing free mentoring to Southwest Michigan's small-business owners and aspiring ones. In 2017, they served 367 businesses, up more than 100 from the previous year.

That helped SCORE Kalamazoo/SW Michigan, a local affiliate of a national organization serving entrepreneurs, to recently be named Chapter of the Year in Michigan.

The chapter continues to add new programs, including its Entrepreneurship Day of workshops begun three years ago and, just this year, the Kalamazoo Capital Consortium to link entrepreneurs with interested lenders.


Earlene McMichael | WMUK

Increasing entrepreneurship could help reduce the high rate of poverty in the city of Kalamazoo, according to Neighborhood Business Coordinator Dwayne Powell Jr. He says that's why the city agreed to be a partner with the inaugural Kalamazoo Black Business Expo being held from 3-7 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 11 at the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts. 


Earlene McMichael | WMUK

Two organizations serving small businesses join forces for their second "Entrepreneurship Day" to help those looking to open or improve a business. The daylong event, featuring 16 workshops on topics ranging from marketing to financing, is scheduled for 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 19 at the Radisson Plaza Hotel in downtown Kalamazoo. More than 150 people attended the last time it was held.


Small businesses in the neighborhoods surrounding downtown Battle Creek are the targets of a new loan program from a local nonprofit organization. “There’s a lot of good, creative ideas coming from these neighborhoods and the families living there,” said Bill Phillips, president and CEO of Neighborhoods Inc. (Battle Creek Enquirer)