Charles County Seeks Applicants for the Business Growth Advantage Program

Charles County is seeking applications for its Business Growth Advantage Program (BGAP), a free business training curriculum for Charles County-based business owners.

Charles County’s BGAP is an eight-week program with online sessions held one evening per week.  Each class will have up to 15 participants, kept small to allow for maximum participation. Business owners must apply to the program and be accepted to participate. The program also provides successful participants with $10,000 in grants to enhance their local businesses.

Charles County describes the program online:

“BGAP gives business owners the tools and strategies to achieve business goals. BGAP training was developed by the Charles County Economic Development Department to meet the needs of growing businesses in Charles County, Maryland and to address business impacts due to COVID. Linking the latest ideas with timeless business principals, BGAP will show you how to boost your business to the next level.”

Program details

  • A three-hour, virtual weekly training session for seven weeks on the following topics:
    • Introductions, Overview, and Introduction to Cash Flow Projections
    • Building a Sustainable Organization’s Infrastructure
    • Leading People and Planning for Growth
    • Marketing and Selling B2B, B2G, B2C
    • Accounting, Human Resources, Legal, Taxes, and Insurance
    • Preparing for Capital, Credit, and Essential Documentation
    • Final Presentations and Graduation
  • Access to a network of entrepreneurial peers and professional resources
  • Complimentary consultations
  • A certificate of completion

Grants for participants

After attending all sessions, participants receive a $10,000 grant to be used for working capital, paid in two installments. $5,000 will be provided upon completion of the training program, and the remaining $5,000 will be available four months later.

To receive grant funding:

  • Attend all training sessions
  • Give a final 15–20-minute presentation
  • Complete all homework assignments prior to the next week’s class.  These assignments are a key part of the program and are designed to assist you approve your business while enabling you to develop the business growth plans.
  • To receive the second payment installment, participants must provide a written statement explaining how the grant fund was used and action taken as the result of the training program that have improved business operations.
  • Participants will also be interviewed and required to answer a 5-10 question impact survey.

Applicant requirements

  • At least two years in business
  • Annual revenues of $50,00 to $250,000
  • Businesses that have a minimum of one employee, excluding owner
  • The position and desire to grow
  • Business affected by Covid

Learn more about the BGAP program and review a sample course curriculum.

Apply to the BGAP online.