Helping Arkansas's Small- and Medium-Sized BusinessesRATIONALE
Many small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Arkansas could be more efficient and profitable if they had access to expert advice on various aspects of their businesses, from financing to manufacturing to marketing. The Arkansas Science and Technology Authority, on behalf of Arkansas Manufacturing Solutions (AMS), assists the state's SMEs with economic-development activities.
Winrock International brings global expertise home to benefit Arkansas through rural and enterprise-development programs, technology assistance, and environmental services provide crosscutting strategies to address challenges facing the region and nation. Activities include natural resource management, manufacturing and business extension, workforce development, and cooperative development.
Winrock will work cooperatively with AMS on efforts that will both benefit and increase the availability of project expertise and training and the distribution of products and services to SMEs. AMS will work with Winrock to permit the sharing of resources between the parties, with the goal of improving transfer of beneficial knowledge and skills to SMEs.
Supported by AMS funding, Winrock will employ a full-time project manager who will work closely with Winrock and its partners to provide manufacturing and business extension services. Winrock will provide office facilities for the project manager including office space, computer, software, shared office equipment, and other resources as necessary to carry out the duties and responsibilities associated with the position and comply with AMS's specified performance goals. Winrock will work with AMS to develop and implement new services in the area of business development and growth planning for manufacturers, and to identify projects for value-added agricultural products, where appropriate.