Thursday, November 19, 2009

Goldman Sachs, Buffett to help small businesses

Goldman Sachs teams with Warren Buffett on $500 million effort to help small businesses
Yahoo! Finance
  • On 10:57 pm EST, Tuesday November 17, 2009
NEW YORK (AP) -- Goldman Sachs Group Inc. is teaming with billionaire investor Warren Buffett to invest $500 million to provide thousands of small business owners across America with college scholarships and boost their access to capital.
AP - FILE - In this March 27, 2009, file photo, Goldman Sachs Chief Executive Officer Lloyd Blankfein leaves the ...AP - FILE - In this March 27, 2009, file photo, Goldman Sachs Chief Executive Officer Lloyd Blankfein ...
The move comes as the company has been criticized for setting aside billions for employee paychecks despite the continuing weak economy.
Goldman's philanthropic effort, called "10,000 Small Businesses," includes a $200 million contribution to community colleges, universities and other institutions to give grants to small business owners to further their education.
The New York-based bank also will invest $300 million through a combination of lending and charitable support. Goldman said the money will be funneled through community development financial institutions to boost lending and technical assistance available to small businesses in underserved communities.
In addition, Goldman Sachs executives, in partnership with national and local business organizations, will aid small businesses with advice, technical assistance and professional networking opportunities.
An advisory council co-chaired by Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein will oversee the program. Legendary investor and Goldman's largest shareholder, Warren Buffett, and Harvard Business School Professor Michael Porter will serve as co-chairs as well. …
10,000 Small Businesses, which has been in development for nearly a year, is a five-year program modeled on the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Women initiative, which creates partnerships between academic institutions and non-profits to provide business and management education to women around the world.
Other Council members include George Boggs, president and CEO of the American Association of Community Colleges, Glenn Hubbard, dean of Columbia Business School and Marc H. Morial, president and CEO of the National Urban League, among others.
The first community college to participate will be LaGuardia Community College in New York City's Queens borough, which houses a Small Business Development Center. The first community development financial institution to receive financing from Goldman Sachs will be New York-based Seedco Financial Services Inc., with loans to underserved businesses in the New York area expected to begin early next year.

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