The Aiken Chamber MEANS business
Helping Business Survive

Monday evening Aiken City Council voted unanimously to create a $1M COVID-19 Small Business Recovery Revolving Loan Fund for City of Aiken businesses.  This is a BOLD initiative that will most certainly help businesses crippled by the world's current events. 
The Aiken Chamber of Commerce has committed $100,000 from its reserves to the fund. 87% of the Aiken Chamber membership is made up of 25 or fewer employees. This is the most significant action the Aiken Chamber can take at this time to help underpin the future of small businesses in Aiken.
Chamber President/CEO J. David Jameson said, "As a 5-star chamber, we are required to have a "rainy day" fund. I'd say that it is raining and raining hard on small businesses now.  The quicker we can get businesses back on their feet, the quicker they can stabilize their workforce.  What better way to invest a portion of our reserves. It's our responsibility to help business survive, then grow again and thrive. Working with our partners, we're going to make this a great day for business again in Aiken, South Carolina."
Businesses meeting the qualifications should contact the City of Aiken, Department of Economic Development at https://cityofaikendeptofeconomicdevelopment.setmore.com/ or (803) 502-4997.

quotes from leaders
Consider This...Thoughts from David

small business admin
Economic recovery loans available now

The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to South Carolina small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza announced Monday. SBA acted under its own authority, as provided by the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act that was recently signed by the President, to declare a disaster following a request received from Gov. Henry McMaster on March 17, 2020.

"Small businesses, private non-profit organizations of any size, small agricultural cooperatives and small aquaculture enterprises that have been financially impacted as a direct result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) since Jan. 31, 2020, may qualify for Economic Injury Disaster Loans of up to $2 million to help meet financial obligations and operating expenses which could have been met had the disaster not occurred," said Carranza.

Eligibility for Economic Injury Disaster Loans is based on the financial impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). The interest rate is 3.75 percent for small businesses. The interest rate for private non-profit organizations is 2.75 percent. SBA offers loans with long-term repayments in order to keep payments affordable, up to a maximum of 30 years and are available to entities without the financial ability to offset the adverse impact without hardship. The administration has also approved a one-year deferment on the payments, so business owners have a full year before repayments begin.

"On average, it takes between two and three weeks to process a decision on an application," said Carranza - stating that many clear-cut applications get approved much faster.

Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications at  https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela   Local assistance is available through the City of Aiken, Department of Economic Development. Book an appointment at https://cityofaikendeptofeconomicdevelopment.setmore.com/  or (803) 502-4997. The South Carolina Small Business Development Center is also offering assistance with the filings. Appointments with SBDC can be made at https://scsbdc.ecenterdirect.com/signup

Visit www.sba.gov 
 
Support your favorite businesses now so you can enjoy them later!
support aiken
Local businesses need our help during this time. Be part of the forward movement of supporting your neighbors, friends and small business owners by purchasing gift cards to hometown businesses in the Aiken area at SupportAiken.com.

Our small business community appreciates and encourages your support. Our Aiken shops and restaurants are offering unique and innovative ways for you to support small businesses by offering online/via phone gift cards, curbside service, and menu specials for you and your family. The list is ever-changing and growing so check SupportAiken.com often. 

Small businesses that would like to be listed on the site should email info@alisonsouthmarketing.com

SupportAiken.com was created to help small businesses connect with everyone in the community. It is sponsored by Aiken Downtown Development Association, Alison South Marketing Group, Atlantic Broadband and Comcast Spotlight. 

"Aiken is my home, and I want to do everything in my power to help our local community and business owners," said Mike Thomas, Alison South's CEO. "This is an easy way for people to shop at their favorite places while maintaining social distancing. Together we can keep small business in Aiken strong."
 
Score Resources
SCORE, the nation's largest network of volunteer, expert business mentors, is dedicated to helping small businesses navigate the current economic times. In the wake of recent developments relating to COVID-19, SCORE is temporarily suspending in-person events until further notice.  However, continued support is fully available through several online opportunities. Visit  www.score.org  to learn more about live webinars, recorded webinars, courses on demand and remote mentoring.
SCORE classes
 
NEW MEMBERS
Aiken Ophthalmology  
Physician (Ophthalmology)
Offering eye care services - exams, screenings, surgery and comprehensive treatment.
536 W. Martintown Road
North Augusta, SC 29841
Contact: Denise Krok
Phone: (803) 442-3006
www.aikeneye.com 

Augusta Pain Center  
Physician (Pain Management)
1321 Interstate Parkway
Augusta, GA 30909
Contact: Brooke Willis
Phone: (706) 738-7246
www.augustapaincenter.com 

Hair of the Dog Salon & Spa 
Pet Grooming
Full-service dog spa and daycare offering services from basic baths to full pet clips. Come let us pamper your pet.
125 Pendleton Street, NW
Aiken, SC 29801
Contact: Carla Igoe
Phone: (803) 649-0060
Mattresses
Our unique business model saves our customers 50 - 80% off retail store prices, while providing personalized service that fits THEIR schedule!
143 Jefferson Davis Highway
Aiken, SC 29801
Contact: Gregory Nye
Phone: (803) 770-7448
www.mattressbyappointment.com

Southpaw Roofing 
Roofing
Provides residential, commercial roofing and new construction. We install shingles, TPO, and work on flat roofs and repairs. Call today for your free estimate.
1211 Summerhill Road
North Augusta, SC 29861
Contact: Dustin Tyra
Phone: (706) 860-6650
www.southpawroofing.com 

Stokes Hodges Ford 
Automobile Dealership
Full service automotive dealership to include sales, service, parts and body shop.
1850 Jefferson Davis Highway
Graniteville, SC 29829
Contact: Greg Hodges
Phone: (803) 593-3700
www.stokeshodgesford.com 

Topgolf Augusta 
Entertainment and Activities
Premier entertainment destination for birthday parties, bachelor/bachelorette parties, corporate events, date nights or just a night out with friends. No matter the occasion or who you are sharing it with, every great time starts with play, fueled by food and drinks, moved by music - we cannot wait to entertain you.
437 Topgolf Way
Augusta, GA 30909
Contact: Anna Mae Masi
Phone: (706) 524-0516

Uniti Fiber  
Telecommunications
We are a large fiber-optic network services provider offering commercial internet, ethernet, dark fiber, VoIP and other technology infrastructure.
107 St. Francis Street, Suite 1800
Mobile, AL 36602
Contact: Dee Taylor
Phone: (803) 645-7922
www.uniti.com

Wild Wing Café  
Restaurant
Born at the beach, Hilton Head Island, SC, where vacationing families and laid-back locals flocked to the town's first-ever restaurant to serve gourmet chicken wings and buckets of ice cold beer. We have continued that laid-back feel in every restaurant that we build. Wild Wing Café is a place where families can go for dinner, a great casual date night and live and local music every Friday and Saturday night.
470 Fabian Drive
Aiken, SC 29803
Contact: Sharyn Hooks
www.wildwingcafe.com