Local Entrepreneur Acceleration Program

The Local Entrepreneur Acceleration Program (LEAP) aims to support diversity in small business ownership across South Carolina by providing minority and women entrepreneurs with business plan development support, technical skills, and the chance to compete for a $20,000 startup capital award.

Thanks to support from Wells Fargo Diverse Community Capital, SC Community Loan Fund launched LEAP in 2019. We have hosted two LEAP rounds since the program was established. These programs have brought in a total of 30 participants, resulting in the completion of 23 business plans. A total of $20,000 in seed capital funding has been awarded through the program to help build a more diverse small business economy in South Carolina.


LEAP is an intensive eight-week course during which small business owners expand their business knowledge. The course culminates in participants refining their business plans and presenting them for a chance to win a $20,000 capital investment. All LEAP graduates leave the program with the ability to seek business financing as well as a comprehensive business plan.


The next LEAP session is taking place in Barnwell, SC on Tuesday evenings this spring.

 Any entrepreneur or team of entrepreneurs interested in developing or expanding a business in South Carolina can apply to participate in LEAP.

Questions? Contact SCCLF Program Manager Kelly Sharkey at kelly@sccommunityloanfund.org to learn more about future sessions.