Strategy and Impact

Strategic Intent

AEO envisions a vibrant microbusiness sector served by a broad range of institutions and sustainable providers of business development and support services—all members and partners of AEO.

AEO’s strategy includes 3 pillars:

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

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

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


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

  • AEO has secured more than $300 million federal dollars for microbusiness industry participants since 2001 through its policy advocacy efforts.

  • Through AEO managed programs, member organizations have received around $20 million dollars of private funding to improve and expand vital programs and services to disadvantaged entrepreneurs and communities, while entrepreneurs have received $1.4 million dollars in technology and equity awards.