In the News: Up to $100K in Matching Grants Available Now

Educational resources provided through grants can greatly benefit small business owners by improving their knowledge and skills. These resources often include workshops, training sessions, and access to expert advice on topics like marketing, financial management, and technology integration.
By leveraging these educational opportunities, business owners can improve their strategic decision-making, optimize operations, and stay competitive in their industry. Additionally, these resources can help entrepreneurs adapt to market changes, innovate, and effectively manage growth. Overall, the educational support included in grants empowers small business owners to achieve sustainable success and long-term profitability.

Small business grants can help entrepreneurs in more ways than one. Of course, financial assistance is useful. But many grant programs also offer educational resources to help business owners make better use of their funds. One nonprofit recently launched such a program for women-owned businesses.

Small Business News June 14, 2024

This week, the roundup starts with the challenge by small businesses of the FTC’s ban on noncompete agreements in court, which affects all small business owners. There is also news about a reminder from the IRS for taxpayers whose income isn’t subject to withholding. The deadline for the second-quarter estimated tax payment is approaching fast on June 17. For that and other small business-related news, here is the rest of the news roundup.

Small Businesses Challenge FTC Ban on Noncompete Agreements in Court

The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) has filed an amicus brief in the case ATS Tree Services, LLC v. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) at the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.

IRS Reminder: June 17 Estimated Tax Payment Deadline Approaching

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has issued a reminder for taxpayers whose income isn’t subject to withholding. The deadline for the second-quarter estimated tax payment is approaching fast on June 17. Meeting this deadline is important to avoid falling behind on taxes and potentially facing underpayment penalties.

Poor Payment Experience Deterring 85% of Consumers

A new study by Discover Global Network shows that 85% of consumers are less likely to interact with a business after a poor payment experience. The 2024 Payment State of the Union (PSOU) study, conducted by Discover Global Network with S&P Global Market Intelligence’s 451 Research, reveals key insights into merchant payment trends and consumer priorities.

Phishing Emails Claiming to be From Intuit, QuickBooks Making Rounds

Phishing emails claiming to be from Intuit/QuickBooks are making their rounds. This means paying extra attention if you happen to use the tools Intuit provides for your small business. Phishing scammers count on trust and urgency. They disguise themselves as reputable sources, urging immediate action to avoid consequences or gain rewards.

Georgia SBA Disaster Loan Deadline for Storm Damage Nears

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is encouraging businesses and private nonprofit organizations in Pennsylvania to apply for economic damage assistance due to the flash flooding and severe storms that struck Berks County on July 9, 2023. The deadline to apply is June 28, 2024.

Reminder of SBA Disaster Loans for Louisiana Businesses and Residents

The Small Business Administration (SBA) is reminding Louisiana businesses and residents of the July 2 deadline to apply for federal disaster loans to repair or replace property damaged by severe weather conditions in St. Tammany Parish. Francisco Sánchez Jr.

Billings Resident Launches App to Bring Back Community, Support Local Businesses

Customers and community members can be some of the biggest advocates for small businesses. And one woman in Billings, Montana is showing just how powerful that advocacy can be. Christina Southern is a digital marketing freelancer who works with local small businesses.

NERC Reports U.S. Regions at Risk for Energy Shortfalls in Summer

Parts of the United States could face electricity supply shortages if demand peaks are higher than anticipated or if less electricity is generated than expected, according to the North American Electric Reliability Corporation’s (NERC) 2024 Summer Reliability Assessment. Under normal summer conditions, NERC expects the continental United States to have adequate power resources this year.

Cozy Entrepreneurship is the Latest Trend in Anti-Hustle Culture

For years, the narrative surrounding entrepreneurship has been about hustling and doing whatever it takes to reach your goals. However, some business owners are now pushing back on that idea, launching a new trend known as soft or cozy entrepreneurship. Deya Aliaga is a freelancer, digital business manager, and YouTuber who has become one of the main proponents of cozy entrepreneurship.

Apple Unveils Apple Intelligence with ChatGPT Integration at WWDC

Apple has announced a new development at its annual Worldwide Developers Conference: the launch of Apple Intelligence. This AI model, integrated into Apple products like iPhones and MacBooks, marks a significant step for the tech giant. The introduction of Apple Intelligence, which uses ChatGPT technology, marks a notable change.

Construction Company Project Manager Convicted of Tax Conspiracy

Jason Pecoy, a project manager at Kent Pecoy and Sons Construction Inc., was convicted by a federal jury in Massachusetts for conspiring to defraud the United States. The case involved Pecoy, his father, Kent Pecoy, and Kevin Kennedy, who operated two municipal golf courses and purchased two custom-built homes from Kent Pecoy’s company.

Inflation Remains a Top Concern for Small Business Owners

The NFIB Small Business Optimism Index saw its highest reading of the year in May, reaching 90.5, a 0.8-point increase from April. Despite this rise, it remains the 29th consecutive month below the historical average of 98. The Uncertainty Index jumped nine points to 85, the highest since November 2020.

The Latest Theft Target Small Businesses Should Know? Legos

When you think of small businesses that might be targeted by theft, your mind likely goes right to luxury goods like jewelry or watches. However, a new string of robberies is putting a whole new category of small businesses on notice – toy and hobby shops that sell Legos. Over the last few months, six Bricks & Minifigs stores across Southern California have been broken into.

Survey Reveals Gap Between Executive Urgency and Employee AI Adoption

A new global survey from the Workforce Lab at Slack reveals that while using AI tools at work is linked to improved productivity and higher employee satisfaction, there is a significant gap between executive urgency and employee adoption of AI. The survey found that two-thirds of desk workers have yet to try AI tools, and 93% do not fully trust AI outputs for work-related tasks.

Salesforce Integrates Project Management into Slack with New Lists

Salesforce has announced the general availability of Slack lists, a new feature that integrates project and task management directly into Slack. This new addition is designed to streamline collaboration and keep teams aligned, eliminating the need to switch between multiple applications.

Alibaba Looking to Attract Small Businesses in U.S. and Europe with New Offering

Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba is trying to attract small businesses in the U.S. and Europe with a new offering called Alibaba Guaranteed. This service provides buyers on the global B2B platform with guarantees on delivery, payments, and settling disputes.

New Service Helping to Combat Epidemic of Loneliness

The U.S. Surgeon General has warned that Americans are facing an “epidemic of loneliness and isolation,” due to lack of in-person social connection. Technology has certainly played a role in creating this isolation. But one new startup is looking to flip the script, using technology to help people create more real world connections.

Pennsylvania SBA Disaster Loan Deadline for Flood Damage Approaching

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is urging businesses and most private nonprofit organizations in Pennsylvania to apply for economic damage assistance due to the flash flooding and severe storms that hit Berks County on July 9, 2023. The deadline to apply for this assistance is June 28, 2024.

Wix Unveils AI-Powered Mobile App Builder for Custom Native Apps Ltd. has announced the launch of AI-powered creation capabilities for its mobile app builder. This new feature allows users to create professional native mobile applications for iOS and Android without needing to write any code.

Less Than a Quarter of Small Businesses Offer 401(k) Plans to Employees

Less than a quarter of small businesses currently offer 401(k) plans for employees, according to a recent survey. And this low rate may be largely due to incorrect assumptions. The survey, which was commissioned by 401(k) provider ShareBuilder 401k, found that only 24 percent of small businesses with between 1 and 50 employees offer 401(k) benefits to employees.

Appeals Court Suspends Grant Program for Black Women-Owned Businesses

A federal appeals court just suspended a grant program serving Black female business owners, saying that it likely violates the Civil Rights Act. This is the latest in a series of court battles surrounding minority business grants, though it’s unlikely to be the last ruling on the subject.

IRS: Many Payments for East Palestine Train Disaster Often Tax-Free

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has announced that many payments made to individuals affected by the East Palestine train derailment in Ohio are not taxable. According to Notice 2024-46, posted on, the derailment on February 3, 2023, qualifies as “an event of a catastrophic nature.

Canva Report: Visual Communication and AI Adoption on the Rise

Canva’s recent Visual Economy Report 2024, conducted in collaboration with Morning Consult, surveyed over 3,700 global business leaders from 12 countries, including the US, UK, Australia, France, Germany, Spain, Brazil, Mexico, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, and India. The report reveals that visual communication is increasingly essential for driving business growth and engagement.

Asana Unveils AI Teammates to Streamline Workflows and Boost Teamwork

Asana has announced the launch of Asana AI teammates, adaptable AI collaborators designed to improve teamwork and streamline complex workflows. Built on Asana’s proprietary data model, The Work Graph®, AI teammates can advise on priorities, power workflows, triage risks, action projects, and reallocate work to help teams achieve their goals faster.

Sprout Social Enhances Platform with AI Innovations and 20 New Capabilities

Sprout Social has announced a series of AI-powered product enhancements and 20 new capabilities across its platform. These innovations are designed to help marketers prioritize critical tasks, enhance creativity, and drive more business impact through social media. Many of these advancements will be showcased in Breaking Ground, Sprout’s new quarterly product innovation event.

Congressman Patrick J. Kennedy on Why Leaders Struggle with Mental Health

I have many times talked and written about my struggle with depression and anxiety over the past 40 years. How it affected me, my family and my businesses and we have talked with other people over the last 15 who have had the courage to combat a similar struggle which is all too common among entrepreneurs and small business owners.

Utah Small Businesses Reminded of July 2 Deadline to Apply for SBA Working Capital Loans

The Small Business Administration (SBA) is reminding Utah small businesses of the July 2 deadline to apply for federal disaster loans to help meet working capital needs caused by severe thunderstorms and flooding in Salt Lake County. Francisco Sánchez Jr.

Deadline Approaching for SBA Disaster Loans in Kansas for Winter Storm Damage

The Small Business Administration (SBA) reminds private nonprofit organizations in Kansas of the upcoming June 27 deadline to apply for SBA federal disaster loans. These loans are available for property damage caused by a severe winter storm that occurred from January 8 to 16. Eligible nonprofits that provide essential governmental services can apply for assistance.

High Retail Vacancy Rates Providing Opportunities for Small Businesses

Many cities around the U.S. are currently dealing with high vacancy rates in retail and office spaces. These empty storefronts can negatively impact communities and lead to financial losses for landlords. But they can also create opportunities for new or growing businesses looking for commercial space at discount prices.

Small Business Owners Most Concerned with Payment Fraud

Small business owners are increasingly concerned about various forms of fraud, according to a recent survey. But payment fraud is their top concern. KeyBank’s 2024 Small Business Survey asked nearly 2,000 small business owners about their fraud concerns. Of those respondents, 44 percent said that their biggest concern is payment fraud, unauthorized transactions or fund transfers.

Entrepreneur Building Inclusivity Into Construction Industry

LGBTQ+ individuals make up a very small percentage of the construction industry. But one entrepreneur is looking to make the industry more welcoming to members of this community. Tommy Whitehead is the owner of TomCo Solutions, an LGBTBE-certified construction company in the Tampa, Florida area. TomCo Solutions is one of just 50 businesses around the U.S. with this certification.

Image: Depositphotos

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