Sumter Chamber to launch new program aimed at entrepreneurs


The Greater Sumter Chamber of Commerce is launching a new program targeting entrepreneurs in the Sumter area interested in learning the four keys to starting a successful business. According to a news release from the Chamber, the program will be made up of six courses beginning Oct. 9 and concluding on Nov. 13.

"The Chamber's Small Business Council has been working on this program since the end of last year. We believe the 4 Keys to starting a successful business are finance, legal, accounting and insurance. We have recruited some of the top business leaders in our community to develop a curriculum to better explain the knowledge needed in those four areas of expertise. It is difficult for someone to start and sustain a small business without an above-average working knowledge of all four, not just a few of them," Chris Hardy, president and CEO of the Greater Sumter Chamber of Commerce, said in the release.

According to the Chamber, the mission of the council is to build relationships with existing Chamber investors and to generate new benefits while monitoring existing ones to ensure members' needs are met. The council works to provide new opportunities to assist member business growth and to support the small business community. With this program, the end goal is to encourage, educate and inspire the entrepreneurial spirit.

"A great product or service comes from outside-the-box thinking and passion; however, sustainability comes from knowing how to run a business," Hardy said.

Applications will be available by Friday on the Chamber's website at All applications are due by Sept. 30 by emailing the application to Maureen Dunton at or dropping it off at 32 E. Calhoun St.

Only the first 20 applicants will be accepted, so it is imperative to get your application in early.

A program registration fee of $75 is due at the first class on Oct. 9 at 5:30 p.m. All programs will take place at the Chamber office.

For more information about the FUEL program or the Greater Sumter Chamber of Commerce, visit or call (803) 775-1231.