Small Business Support

U.S. Small Business Administration

Florida has two regional Small Business Administration offices within the state, which can provide specific information on small business loans, grants, bonds, venture capital and other financial assistance. They also provide free counseling, advice, and information on starting, operating or expanding a small business.

 

Start a New Business

If you have an idea for a new business and need help making it a reality, please visit the following websites:

SBA.gov: A step-by-step guide on how to start a new business.

SBA Office of Veterans Business Development: Supports veterans, reserve component members and their dependents or survivors in the business community.

Florida Small Business Development Centers: Provides free training and counseling on business management to entrepreneurs and small business managers.

Minority Business Development Agency: Encourages the establishment and growth of minority-owned businesses in America.

SCORE: Educates entrepreneurs and helps small businesses start, grow and succeed nationwide.

Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR): Helps small businesses engage in federal research, allowing them to develop their technology for commercial markets.

StartupAmericaPartnership.org: Delivers strategic and substantive resources to help entrepreneurs start and scale companies.

Women's Business Centers: Provides business training, counseling and other resources to help women start and grow successful businesses.

 

Export Assistance

The following links can help you expand your business into new markets abroad and increase your sales to foreign buyers.

Enterprise Florida: Provides export counseling and organizes trade missions and exhibitions abroad.

Export.gov: Provides official export information and services to small and medium-sized U.S. companies.

Export-Import Bank of the United States: Assists in financing U.S. exports to international markets, offering capital guarantees, export credit insurance, loan guarantees and direct loans.

International Trade Administration: Promotes trade and investment, and ensures fair trade by enforcing our trade laws and agreements.

Office of Commercial and Business Affairs (CBA): Coordinates U.S. State Department advocacy on behalf of American businesses and provides assistance in opening markets, protecting intellectual property, and resolving trade and investment disputes. CBA also provides information on U.S. export controls for sensitive equipment and technologies, and business-related visas for employees, partners and clients of U.S. firms.

Trade Adjustment Assistance Centers: Provides financial assistance to eligible companies needing help responding to import competition.

Trade Agreements Compliance Program: Supports American businesses facing a tariff or experiencing difficulties with a foreign customs office that will not clear their goods for importation.

U.S. Commercial Service: Offers trade counseling, market data, business matchmaking and commercial diplomacy in support of U.S. businesses.

 

Contracting Opportunities

Federal, state and local governments often require contracting opportunities to complete a task. By statute, federal agencies must award 23 percent of prime contracts to small businesses.

Federal Contracting: Find contracting opportunities with the federal government.

MBDA’s Phoenix-Opportunity Matching System: A free tool available to all registered minority firms and those seeking to do business with minority firms that gathers together opportunities from many databases in one easy-to-use interface.

State Contracting: Find contracting opportunities with the state of Florida.

 

Regulatory Assistance

Florida Dept. of Business & Professional Regulation: Obtain a license to provide a state-regulated service.

SBA Office of Advocacy: Independent federal service to advance the views and concerns of the small business community.

Small Business Environmental Compliance Assistance: Provides technical and regulatory assistance to small businesses regarding environmental protection issues.

 

Tax Information

Florida Department of Revenue: Oversees the compliance of state tax laws and advocates for the uniformity and fairness of local property taxes.

IRS Small Business and Self-Employed Tax Center: The Internal Revenue Service is responsible for administering various tax provisions that affect American businesses.

SBA.gov: Helps with every aspect of tax responsibilities, including strategies for tax record-keeping.