SBA chief visits Utah to discuss local small businesses and post-pandemic growth

SALT LAKE CITY — On Friday, Isabella Casillas Guzman, head of the US Small Business Association, traveled to Utah for a tour of Beehive State.

“Utah is one of the best places to do business,” Guzman said.

One of his stops was Alpha Cafe location in downtown Salt Lake City.

Alpha Coffee owners Lori and Carl Churchill said it’s thanks to the SBA that their business has been able to grow even during the pandemic.

“It’s a labor of love – with a strong focus on hard work,” said Carl Churchill.

Churchill said a conversation over coffee sparked their idea for their small business.

The Small Business Administration was instrumental in helping them start their business.

“For us, the SBA was essential. I mean, we opened our first cafe with an SBA loan,” Churchill said.

That’s why this meeting is special, because Guzman visited their company. Additionally, she was a keynote speaker for the Small Business Digital Alliance.

Small businesses obviously face challenges in this economy because we all see inflationary pressures or a tight labor market,” Guzman said.

She said they have seen an increase in small business start-ups across the country.

“The Biden-Harris administration is committed to building an economy that works for everyone. From the bottom up, that means small businesses,” Guzman said.

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