LTA receives USDA grant


The Latte Training Academy, Inc. has been awarded a grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to provide training and technical assistance to entrepreneurs throughout the CNMI, according to a statement from the academy.

The training will be implemented in partnership with the CNMI Small Business Development Center. The LTA press release did not specify the amount of the grant.

“We recognize that the CNMI is in an economic uptick and the focus of our entrepreneur training program will be on guiding aspiring entrepreneurs to capitalize on this trend,” said LTA executive director Arielle Buyum.

The program is expected to launch in September 2017.

Participating entrepreneurs will be able to receive additional resources through the program’s partnership with the SBDC at the Department of Commerce. These services include assistance on business plan development, financial forecasting and locating funds.

“We are working with the Latte Training Academy, Inc. to provide the first of its training series at the department’s upcoming Business Development Summit. The focus will be on helping aspiring entrepreneurs from Saipan, Tinian and Rota navigate the unique business landscape in the CNMI,” said Commerce Secretary Mark Rabauliman.

“Building our workforce capacity through trainings such as those provided by Latte Training Academy enable our community to develop our local capacity and have more economic opportunities for families. Supporting local businesses and aspiring entrepreneurs strengthens the backbone of our economy and gives our community the opportunities to learn new skills that will benefit our economy in the long term,” said Gov. Ralph DLG Torres.

When notified of the award, Delegate Gregorio Kilili C. Sablan (Ind-MP) expressed his excitement for the program’s launch.

“Teaching entrepreneurial skills is good not only for people who want to start businesses, but is good for the people those new businesses will employ. In Congress, I will keep working to maintain funding for Rural Business Enterprise grants and for all of the USDA programs that benefit our islands,” said Sablan.

“We are grateful for the opportunity we have been granted through our regional USDA office. The work that the regional office has done speaks volumes to the dedication that they hold to ensuring our community is successful,” said LTA president Juan-Carlos Benitez.

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Press Release
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