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New library program aimed at entrepreneurs

Special to The Dallas Examiner | 7/7/2014, 1:36 p.m.
The Dallas Examiner Logo Photo by Robyn H. Jimenez

Special to The Dallas Examiner

Dallas’ small business owners will get a much-needed leg-up on the competition this summer through a new initiative.

The Dallas Public Library is teaming with Etsy, an e-commerce hub for entrepreneurs, to offer the Craft Entrepreneurship Program from July 12 through the end of August at the J. Erik Jonsson Central Library, 1515 Young St. The program will provide micro-business training to underemployed, low-income adults with artistic skills to help sell their products to new markets. Dallas is one of only three cities selected for the second round of the pilot program and the only public library chosen to participate.

“This program aligns well with our mission to support grassroots economic development,” said Jo Giudice, director of the Dallas Public Library.

Founded in 2005, Etsy has more than 40 million members and more than a million active shops that sold $1.35 billion in total merchandise in 2013. The company will offer classes in business finance, marketing, and other topics and is one of the first initiatives offered through the Sammons Small Business Center, which will open July 8 at the Central Library.

The program is directed at people who have not sold online with Etsy but already create handmade crafted goods, including at least one type of them ready to sell. The classes will teach local crafters to establish and run an online business in order to sell their merchandise to a wider market. Participation is limited to 20 Dallas residents in the low-to-moderate income range.

For more information, visit http://www.dallaslibrary2.org/etsy.