About AEO

About Us

 

 

The Association for Enterprise Opportunity (AEO) is the leading voice of innovation in microfinance and microbusiness in the United States. Since 1991, AEO and its member and partner organizations have helped millions of entrepreneurs contribute to economic growth while supporting themselves, their families and their communities. AEO's more than 1,000 members and partners include a broad range of organizations that provide capital and services to assist underserved entrepreneurs in starting, stabilizing and expanding their businesses. Together, we are working to change the way capital and services flow to underserved entrepreneurs so that they can create jobs and opportunities for all.

AEO's work focuses on three main areas:

  1. Research and insights on underserved entrepreneurs to create actionable impact.

  2. Innovations that support access to capital for small businesses and aspiring entrepreneurs.

  3. Advocacy efforts to ensure the availability of capital and technical assistance to entrepreneurs nationwide.

Mission & Vision

 

AEO’s mission is to create economic opportunity for underserved entrepreneurs by supporting the development of strong and effective initiatives to assist them in starting, stabilizing and expanding businesses.

AEO’s vision is for every individual in the U.S. to have access to resources and services for creating wealth, assets and healthy communities through business ownership.

Strategy & Impact

 

AEO and its members and partners are helping to build a vibrant microbusiness sector served by a broad range of institutions and sustainable providers of business development and support services.

AEO’s strategy includes three pillars:

  1. Strengthen and restructure the microbusiness field to serve as a robust source of sustainable products and services to an increasing number of underserved entrepreneurs.

  2. Link the needs of a growing microbusiness sector to an ecosystem of market partners for greater economic impact.

  3. Catalyze new solutions and the rapid adoption of standards and innovation by microbusiness development organizations to drive transformation in the field.

AEO has had a significant impact on the microbusiness sector, including:

  • AEO members have helped more than two million entrepreneurs create jobs for themselves and their communities.

  • AEO has secured more than $1B+ federal dollars for microbusiness industry participants since 2001 through policy advocacy efforts.

  • Through AEO-managed programs, member organizations have received $20 million in private funding to improve/expand vital programs and services to underserved entrepreneurs and distressed communities.

  • AEO research and initiatives have shaped policy and practice toward opportunity, industry transformation and financial inclusion. 

Recent News

April 18, 2018
Today in Washington
HSBC Chair Steve Chabot Urges for Inclusion of Small Business Bills in FY19 NDAA

April 11, 2018
Today in Washington
Bill Package Introduced to Redesign IRS – Yesterday, Ways and Means Subcommittee on Oversight Chair Lynn Jenkins (R-KS) and Ranking Member John Lewis (D-GA), introduced a bipartisan package of bills to redesign the IRS.

April 10, 2018
Today in Washington
Trump Administration Releases First Rule on Obamacare – In response to an Executive Order issued by the President last fall, HHS issued a final rule yesterday, which will provide states with more options to select an essential health benefit plan.

March 22, 2018
Today in Washington
Text of Omnibus Bill Released – House Republicans released the text for a $1.3T spending bill late last night. Congress has until tomorrow to pass the legislation and avoid a third government shutdown this year.

March 19, 2018
Today in Washington
FY18 Funding Deadline Nears – Congress is coming down to the wire to find an agreement to fund the government through September 30 and avoid a third partial government shutdown this year.

March 14, 2018
Today in Washington
Dodd-Frank Regulatory Reform – Today, the Senate is expected to vote on a motion to limit debate on S. 2155, the “Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act.”

March 13, 2018
Today in Washington
Debate Continues: Dodd-Frank Regulatory Relief – Today, the Senate continues debate of S. 2155, the “Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act.”

March 12, 2018
Today in Washington
Small Business Committee markups – The House and Senate Small Business Committees will hold markups this week.

March 9, 2018
Today in Washington
Congress Adjourns for the Week – Congress has adjourned, and will return on Monday, March 12. When they return, the Senate will continue consideration of S. 2155, the “Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act.”