Starting your own business takes cash. Sometimes, it takes lots and lots of cash. For many would be business owners this need for startup money feels like an insurmountable hurdle. The good news is that there’s no reason to let the need for cash derail your business before it gets started. These 7 tips and resources are here to get you started.
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) http://www.sba.gov offers many loan opportunities for start up businesses. Among your options are loan programs such as the 7(a) Loan Guarantee Program which provides loans through banks whereby the SBA acts as the guarantor. There is also the Micro loan program for loans up to $35,000. For these loans the borrower goes through intermediaries, nonprofits that are not banks. Micro lenders also get funding from foundations and corporations, and are more likely to loan money to start-ups than banks are. The SBA has a new loans program called Patriot Express, for veterans, military members, their spouses, and others. Loans are available up to $500,000. Check with your local SBA office or SBA website (www.sba.gov) and find a list of banks where you can apply.
Venture capital firms, companies whose business model is to profit from investing in startup businesses with great ideas, are a great resource. The National Venture Capital Association http://www.nvca.org lists information on venture capital firms across the country and provides contact information for your states chapter. Venture capitalists invest millions of dollars often to technology related firms. Also consider Angel investors who are wealthy individuals that want to invest in a new business venture. Networking and a bit of research may provide you with a list of contacts.
Grants and Government resources.
Despite the hype you may have seen or heard, there are no government grants for small businesses. However, if your business is a non-profit that helps small businesses then you have options. Additionally, if your business is a non-profit then you can apply for a grant from corporate giving programs, state and federal government and foundations. You must be a 501 (c) 3 status with the IRS (Internal Revenue Service). For more information on these non-profit opportunities visit the Small Business Association website at http://www.sba.gov.
Robert Moment is an innovative sought-after small business coach and marketing coach and author of Invisible Profits: The Power of Exceptional Customer Service. Robert specializes in teaching entrepreneurs and small business owners how to start a business that profits and grow. Visit http://www.howtostartyoursmallbusiness.com and sign-up for the FREE 7 day Small Business Startup e-course.
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Article Submitted On: May 14, 2008
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