U.S. Small Business Administrator tours NWA businesses

ROGERS, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Isabella Guzman, Administrator of the Small Business Administration (SBA), talked to Northwest Arkansas business leaders about struggles to stay open during COVID-19.

U.S. Rep. Steve Womack, R-Rogers, hosted Guzman and they both visited with local businesses to discuss pandemic recovery in NWA. Administrator Guzman said small businesses have been through a lot in the past year.

“We saw businesses facing huge cost increases just in terms of their operations having to shift, purchasing PPE, making sure workforces are safe, those extra costs combined with reduced revenue has really impacted our small businesses across the board,” Guzman said.

Guzman toured Mundo-Tech, an aerospace manufacturing company in Rogers, to see the company’s new facility. Mundo-Tech CEO and President, Mundo Harbaugh, said the new facility was able to be completed with financial support from the SBA.

“It really filled in the gaps and allowed us to continue building our building,” Harbaugh said.

Mundo-Tech received money through SBA’s Paycheck Protection Program in 2020.

“During the pandemic in 2020 we were able to successfully maintain all of our employees due to PPP we received,” Harbaugh said.

Guzman said SBA has given about $3.2 billion in COVID aid to Arkansas businesses. 43,669 businesses in the state received PPP loans.