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MID-WILSHIRE : Retired Executives Aid Entrepreneurs

July 25, 1993

Free advice for fledgling entrepreneurs is available from retired executives each weekday from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Small Business Administration's Business Information Center, 3600 Wilshire Blvd.

The counselors, who point out stumbling blocks and how to avoid them, belong to the Service Corps of Retired Executives Assn., a volunteer program of the SBA.

"We tell people the things you ought to know before you get into business," said Harry Spitzer, an association volunteer and former advertising executive. "There are a lot of things people don't think about until it's too late."

Counselors offer advice on such topics as making a business plan, start-up costs and loan applications. The center maintains a library and business-related computer programs and offers seminars at nominal fees on the nuts and bolts of setting up a business.

People thinking about starting a business "sometimes just need a sounding board," said counselor Herbert Piltzer, who was a manufacturer of office products. "If they don't have the right experience, we try to talk them out of it. We don't want them to use up their life savings" if they can't succeed.

Each advice-seeker is matched with a volunteer with relevant expertise. The volunteers "want to keep their hands in and pass their knowledge and experience along," Spitzer said.

Two counselors are available at the 3600 Wilshire Blvd. office each weekday. The office also maintains a roster of other counselors who are available to talk about their areas of expertise.

Other locations and information: (213) 251-7254 or (213) 894-3017.

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