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Cooperative Extension: SC Center for Cooperative and Enterprise Development

Technical Assistance

The Center’s staff and partners have an established history of providing technical assistance and development activities to businesses in rural areas.

The Center maintains a philosophy of working alongside clients to provide guidance through one-on-one or small group counseling, which helps staff provide more targeted versus generic assistance. Staff and partners have found that this approach empowers the client to make better decisions about their business, increasing their potential to become more sustainable in the future.

Areas of Technical Assistance

Business Planning and Business Plan Development

Help transforming your ideas into a targeted business plan! Center staff work directly with you, providing guidance during the business planning process. Our goal is to help you understand the process and to help you obtain funding to establish or expand your operations.

Financial Management Assistance

The Center staff has a history of assisting individuals and firms negatively affected by the economy to take advantage of newly created opportunities as a result of such changes. The center staff can help you and your business network with customers and other businesses as well as assisting with business succession and estate planning.

Education and Training

Education and training initiatives are aimed at providing information in areas such as financial management, marketing, tax preparation, leadership skills, entrepreneurship, start-up cost, credit management and expanding business operations. 


Information about upcoming Center Workshops, Workshops, and Programs by Partners can be found below:

Feeding Innovation

Feeding Innovation is designed to support entrepreneurs interested in developing or expanding healthy food businesses in food deserts or underserved areas of the state.  Participants engage in a ten-week entrepreneurial training program that covers everything needed to develop a basic healthy food business plan from marketing to financial planning to negotiations and deal-making.  With help from the course instructor and industry experts, participants refine their ideas and develop their business plans over the ten-week period before presenting them to a panel of judges during a final pitch event.  The entrepreneurs with the strongest business plans will be awarded $30,000, $10,000 and $5,000 in seed capital.

South Carolina New and Beginning Farmer Program

The South Carolina New and Beginning Farmer Program helps our state's new farmers accelerate the development of their farm businesses by providing innovative research-based agribusiness education, administering technical assistance, and opening up access to peer-to-peer networking and resource providers.

SC Department of Agriculture ACRE Program

The ACRE Business Planning Curriculum Program is held each fall, with five two-hour courses spread out over six weeks, concluding with a pitch day. Attendees will receive training in marketing, financial planning, value-added processes, legal requirements, state and federal grant opportunities, and more.

Upon completion of the program, each participant will have built their own business plan, receive a certificate verifying successful completion, and will have the opportunity to pitch their business for the chance to be awarded one of six $5,000 grants.

SC Center for Cooperative and Enterprise Development
SC Center for Cooperative and Enterprise Development | 900 Clemson Road, Columbia, SC 29229