What is the mission & purpose of the University of La Verne SBDC?
A: The University of La Verne Small Business Development Center (SBDC) stimulates economic growth in the East San Gabriel Valley by providing small businesses and entrepreneurs with expert consulting, effective training and access to resources.
Through consulting, training and referrals, the SBDC supports small businesses become successful and contribute to the vitality of the economy in the east San Gabriel Valley.
Is the SBDC the same as SBA?
A: No. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) was established in 1953 as an independent agency of the federal government in order to help people start and grow their businesses. The Small Business Development Center program receives funding from the SBA to assist small business through no cost one-on-one business consulting and low-cost training.
To learn about the University of La Verne Small Business Development Center’s services, please call (909) 448-1556.
Do I need to be in business to use SBDC services?
A: No. If you’re in the exploration phase of opening a business or researching the feasibility of a for-profit venture you can take the first step by reviewing our training calendar, registering for an upcoming workshop or by scheduling an appointment to meet with one of our business consultants. For more information or to schedule an appointment, please contact (909) 448-1556 or visit our contact us page.
Do I need to write a business plan?
A: By writing a business plan you are planning for the success of your business. A business plan is an operational tool for running your business and is mandatory if you are looking for investment capital or a small business loan.
For assistance with writing your business plan or to attend a training seminar please check out our calendar here for seminars on writing a business plan or contact us at (909) 448-1556.
What is SBIR?
A: SBIR is an acronym for Small Business Innovation Research program (SBIR); a highly competitive program that encourages small businesses to explore their technological potential and provides the incentive to profit from its commercialization. Small businesses must meet certain eligibility criteria to participate in the SBIR program included but not limited to:
- American-owned and independently operated
- Principal researcher employed by business
- Company size limited to 500 employees
The SBIR program is a three-phase program and provides non-dilutive funding. Following submission of proposals, participating agencies make SBIR awards based on qualification, degree of innovation, technical merit and future market potential. For more information on the SBIR program, visit http://www.sbir.gov/ .
How far out should I project my income and expenses for my startup?
A: One of the most valuable financial reports for a startups is the cash flow statement. Businesses should project 12 months of income and expense items for two separate scenarios:
- Expected Revenue
- Break-even revenue & expense
For assistance on accounting software training seminars, projections or to make an appointment with one of our business consultants, please call (909) 448-1556.
Can you help if my business is a non-profit?
A: Because of the funding guidelines for the SBDC, we are not able to assist those businesses that are established as not-for-profit. For assistance with non-profit questions or topics please contact the Volunteer Center for Non-Profits at (714) 953-5757 and or your local non-profit resource center.
I have a small business and would like to sell to the federal government. Where can I find government solicitations for bid?
A: The best place to start looking for Federal Government procurement opportunities is FedBizOpps (Federal Business Opportunities) www.fedbizopps.gov.
The FedBizOpps web site provides assistance by e-mail and a toll-free helpline and has been designated as the single source for federal government procurement opportunities that exceed $25,000. Commercial vendors seeking federal markets for their products and services can search, monitor and retrieve opportunities solicited by the entire federal contracting community. FedBizOpps can be searched for procurement opportunities by keyword, solicitation number, date, procurement classification code, and agency for active or archived solicitations. Vendors can also sign up for automoatic notices from the system for new procurement opportunities.
For assistance with federal or state procurement opportunities please contact us at (909) 448-1556.
How can I engage my community to help promote my business?
A: There are a variety of avenues to pursue to help engage your local community for example, participating in local events, hosting an open house at your business, actively using social media, creating an email marketing campaign and more. Consider reaching out to your local media if you plan on hosting a special event, or if your business promotes a local or charitable cause for example. The following are two types of articles you can write that will give your business exposure to the media:
Time hook: This type of article is time sensitive and is of interest to the community due to the issue being of interest to a large number of people at a particular point in time. For example, if the community generally has a concern that businesses are not using environmentally friendly products in the area and your business prides itself on using environmentally safe products it could be an opportunity to contact your local paper with information about the types of products used in your business and its importance to you and the community.
Ever Green: This type of article may be of interest to a large number of people in the community; however it is not time sensitive. It could simply be a great-human interest story.
For more information or make an appointment with a business consultant regarding marketing, or register for a marketing training seminar, please call (909) 448-1556.