Tuesday, April 23, 2024

UTSA highlights its small business resources for Brazilian delegation

UTSA highlights its small business resources for Brazilian delegation

OCTOBER 25, 2022 — A delegation of high-level officials responsible for the development of the small and medium-sized enterprise sector in Brazil recently visited the UTSA Small Business Development Center (SBDC) and toured the headquarters of one of its clients, San Antonio-based Braustin Homes, the nation’s first virtual mobile home dealership.

The delegation, which included representatives from the Brazilian Service of Support for Micro and Small Enterprises, visited the United States to gain a deeper understanding of the different aspects of the SBDC model.

The UTSA SBDC provides one-on-one, confidential business advising services with certified business counselors at no cost to the business owner. It also offers workshops and training for entrepreneurs. The UTSA SBDC serves San Antonio, Bexar County and the surrounding 10 counties.

“The UTSA SBDC has an impressive history of supporting San Antonio entrepreneurs.”

In its 2022 fiscal year, the UTSA SBDC assisted its clients in launching 79 new businesses, expanding 80 businesses, creating 560 jobs, retaining 1,358 jobs and securing $47.88 million in total capital.

Among the UTSA SBDC’s clients is Braustin Homes, which is dedicated to improving access to affordable housing in San Antonio and the surrounding areas by manufacturing high quality, affordable mobile homes through a new, technology-enhanced sales process.

The UTSA SBDC assisted Braustin in its efforts to obtain funding early on to support the company’s growth. The center also helped Braustin Homes secure CARES Act funding to weather the COVID-19 pandemic.

When Braustin Homes initially came to the UTSA SBDC, it had four employees and had sold 22 homes. By 2020, it had 18 employees and had sold over 300 homes. Today, the company has 37 employees and the firm’s sales have nearly doubled.

UTSA SBDC Advisor Crystal Darby assists Braustin Homes with strategic planning and funding, ensuring that Braustin Mobile Homes continues to thrive.

“We were excited to welcome the delegation from Brazil to our headquarters,” said Alberto Pina, CEO of Braustin Homes. “UTSA’s Small Business Development Center has been a tremendous resource for us. My brother and I began Braustin Homes in 2017, and we relied heavily on the resources they provided as we worked to reinvent the mobile home industry through technology. Today, we have 37 employees and two hybrid dealerships with plans to grow rapidly in the next few years. We’re happy to share our experiences with the Brazilian officials and welcome the opportunity to be ambassadors for UTSA’s SBDC.”

The UTSA SBDC and members of the UTSA Institute for Economic Development (IED) shared information about the SBDC model with the Brazilian officials, state department personnel and other members of the delegation. This model includes funding for businesses, technology commercialization, market research, government contracting, cybersecurity, disaster preparedness and emergency response.

“The UTSA SBDC has an impressive history of supporting San Antonio entrepreneurs,” said Rod McSherry, UTSA associate vice president for Innovation and Economic Development. “This is an international spotlight on the fine work of the UTSA SBDC and its client’s success. It will show other San Antonio area business owners they can benefit from our services, too.”

Learn more about the UTSA Small Business Development Center

The Brazilian delegation’s visit was made possible by the U.S. Department of State, U.S. Mission to the Organization of American States (OAS) with support from the OAS, the U.S. Embassy in Brasilia and UTSA.

The Brazilian delegation continued its U.S. trip in Washington, D.C. after visiting San Antonio, where delegates met with officials from the Small Business Administration (SBA), U.S. State Department, U.S. Senate and Congress Small Business Committee and OAS.

Kevin Wier

UTSA Today is produced by University Strategic Communications,
the official news source
of The University of Texas at San Antonio.

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UTSA Today is produced by University Communications and Marketing, the official news source of The University of Texas at San Antonio. Send your feedback to news@utsa.edu. Keep up-to-date on UTSA news by visiting UTSA Today. Connect with UTSA online at Facebook, Twitter, Youtube and Instagram.



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