Small Business Consortia for Emerging Markets

The California Emerging Technology Fund (CETF) assumed a statewide leadership role to minimize the Digital Divide by accelerating the deployment of broadband and other advanced communication services to underserved communities. CETF identified the small business industry as a community that benefits greatly from broadband access. However, there are many small businesses that either fail to employ or under-employ broadband in their businesses. CETF aims to reach these unserved and underserved small businesses to learn about their broadband use, educate them about the benefits of broadband, and increase their broadband usage.

CETF initiated this outreach program with the formation of an advisory group consisting of statewide organizations that serve the small business community. CETF empowered the advisory group, called the California Small Business Broadband Initiative, to achieve the goals outlined above. This report governs the management and completion of the first phase of the California Small Business Broadband Initiative’s activities that were geared towards learning about broadband use by unserved and underserved small businesses, as well as educating low- and moderate-income small business owners about the benefits of broadband and increasing their usage.