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Ohio Growth Summit seeks to unleash job-growing power of small businesses

Thursday, June 05, 2014

Article by Columbus Business First

Fully 99 percent of Ohio businesses have fewer than 100 employees – and though they’re small, they still provide 60 percent of the jobs.

The key to exponential job growth is for public-private partnerships to help micro-companies progress to the 10-99 employee stage, said Jerry Ross, executive director of the National Entrepreneur Center in Orlando, Florida.

“We are a small-business country,” said Ross, opening speaker of the Ohio Growth Summit entrepreneurial conference being held Wednesday and Thursday at Columbus State Community College.

“What we need to do as communities is say, ‘How do we get together to grow our small businesses?’ ” he said. “The leaders need to start talking to each other.”

Ross’s center combines the forces and expertise of 12 different economic development agencies under one roof, including the U.S. Commerce Department, the University of Central Florida’s Small Business Development Center and incubation program, the Orlando chapter of the Score business mentorship group and several minority business associations.

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