Taking Advantage of Small Business Resources
The Baton Rouge Area offers a plethora of small business resources to help you start, support or grow your small business. Check out a few of the best small business resource programs and organizations in the region below.
Louisiana Small Business Development Center
For the up-and-coming entrepreneur or the early stage small business owner, you can’t go wrong by seeking help from LSBDC. With established locations at Southeastern University and Southern University, along with a satellite location at Louisiana State University, LSBDC provides cutting-edge and contemporary business solutions to business owners all over the Capital Region. LSBDC also commits to providing ongoing consulting help for the entirety of the life of your business. Over the past 15 years, LSBDC has provided over 350,000 hours of entrepreneurial counseling to more than 55,000 entrepreneurs and offered over 5,000 training events and seminars to over 92,000 attendees. If you’re interested in learning about starting and financing your business, marketing your business, managing your budget and cash flow for your business, or anything else that you believe would help you run a successful business, then sign up for a workshop today.
Louisiana Economic Development
As one of the main driving forces behind Louisiana’s business environment and economy, LED constantly engages with local partners to enhance community competitiveness through expanding and retaining in-state businesses, enhancing workforce development solutions, and attracting foreign direct investment while growing international trade. LED has a variety of Small Business Programs to help you grow, such as their CEO Roundtables, Economic Gardening Initiative, and their Small Business Loan and Guaranty Program. You may find more in-depth information on their programs here.
Louisiana Technology Park
The Louisiana Technology Park is one of the South’s premier business incubators, providing resources for high-tech start-up companies to bring their products and services to market quickly and effectively. LA Tech Park does this by offering assistance with business planning, access to angel credit and venture capitalists, accounting resources, and strategic partner networking. They also provide marketing, public relations, and human resources services. Becoming a part of their business incubator allows you access to their conference rooms, office space, fitness room, and many other resources. Their economic impact is significant: in 2017, LA Tech Park raised $24.9 million in funds, $11.2 million in wages, helped increase business sales by 26%, and was responsible for creating 303 jobs. Select startups are also invited to participate in the PitchBR competition to pitch their business ideas to a panel of judges for a chance to win a sizeable investment prize.
Louisiana Procurement Technical Assistance Center
If you’re looking for professional insight on landing a government contract for your business, look no further than LA PTAC. From local, state, or federal contracting, LA PTAC has assisted Louisiana businesses secure over $8.6 billion in government contract awards for their clients. Working with LA PTAC, you will learn the language of a government contract, as well as best practices to ensure an award is given to your business. You may want to read over this blog post describing Senior Procurement Consultant Cindy Carrier’s best practices for a winning proposal. Become a client today to meet with Cindy at the David E. Roberts Center for Economic Development in the Raising Canes Entrepreneurial Hub.
Trufund Financial Services
Trufund works to stimulate economic development in underserved communities by providing innovative financial solutions and hands-on technical assistance to small businesses and nonprofit organizations. If you cannot afford financing through traditional sources, you may want to check out Trufund. In Louisiana alone, Trufund has funded over $15 million in loans since 2006. They also have low-income community loans that range from $50,000 – $250,000. Disaster relief is also provided so that your business may recover from the hardships related to natural disasters. To better serve minority-owned businesses and promote equality, Trufund has a number of programs and initiatives targeting those members so that they may help their respective communities.
There are many more resources available to small business owners in the Capital Region. BRAC remains committed to connecting business owners with these resources through its monthly Small Business Series, in which more details can be found at brac.org/events.
Written by Jason Avelar
As Economic Research and Policy Analyst at BRAC, Jason conducts research to support key policy focus areas, including workforce development, education, small business, and more. Additionally, he serves as the staff lead for the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council.