DALLAS -- Southwest Corporate is sponsoring a free, open-enrollment seminar focused on attracting and serving business members.
The seminar is designed to provide credit union management with an overview of the steps required to launch and maintain a member business services program, including ACH, remote deposit, business lending and marketing. "Business Connect" will take place Monday, Oct. 27, the day before Southwest's 31st annual Economic Forum at Dallas' Westin Galleria Hotel.
"Small business has always formed the backbone of the American economy. So why now are financial institutions of all kinds stampeding to attract small business owners as customers? A demanding economy serves up the answer," said Jody Beck, senior vice president of operations.
"Competition is fierce, margins are shrinking and this new market offers significant growth opportunity."
Southwest sourced an August 2008 SBA study that reported the median personal business in 2002 (the most recent data available) had just over $10,000 in revenue, with an average of $47,000. Roughly 3.5 million of those each produced more than $50,000 in revenue.
Small businesses with several employees were more likely than nonemployers to use start-up and expansion financing; employers were also more likely to take out bank loans. Nonemployers tended to rely more on credit cards.
Both groups were similar in that their main financing routes were internal. Personal and/or family savings were used by 66.7% of employers at start-up and by 53.6% of nonemployers.
"There are many facets of attracting and serving business members. That is why we are offering a comprehensive program designed to provide credit union decision makers with plenty of information as they consider this important growth opportunity," Beck said.
The event is free and available to members and non-members; however, participants must register in advance. To register or for more information, visit Southwest Corporate's Web site (www.swcorp.org).