SCORE, an organization that provides free business mentoring, set a record for providing help in Maine last year, the group said.

SCORE Maine provided mentoring to 4,300 entrepreneurs and small-business owners in the state, the organization said, and also delivered 108 webinars to 2,300 participants.

The requests for help from business mentors were driven at least in part by the pandemic, which posed unique obstacles to both startups and existing businesses, said Dan Reed, a spokesman for the organization.

SCORE Maine’s mentors helped entrepreneurs focus on key issues such as funding, employee retention and business transitions, District Director Steve Veazey said.

Reed said SCORE helped 224 business startups and also created nearly 1,300 new jobs, excluding business owners.

All three Maine SCORE chapters – northern, central and southern – ranked in the top 25 chapters nationally last year, based on an annual measurement of engagement and economic impact conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers and supported by the SCORE Foundation. That means Maine’s chapters ranked second among the states for SCORE client engagement, the organization said.

Working with the City of Portland Office of Economic Opportunity, SCORE Maine also created an immigrant-workshop pilot program and focused on diversity in recruiting volunteers, the organization said.

SCORE said it has more than 130 volunteers in the state who provided more than 19,000 hours of mentorship in 2021.

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or login first for digital access. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.