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Growing a Small Business in Louisiana

Louisiana Economic Development, through a variety of programs and partners located around the state, can provide the expertise needed to fuel the growth of any small business. By connecting to other local, state and federal resource providers, we provide a robust ecosystem that supports small businesses and entrepreneurs at all stages of development.

SMALL BUSINESS ASSISTANCE

Growing a business can be challenging, but Louisiana has several programs and resource providers that offer small business owners the assistance they need to grow their businesses. Learn about each of the available assistance programs below.

Small And Emerging Business Development Program
Louisiana Economic Development’s Small and Emerging Business Development (SEBD) program is designed to increase the managerial and technical skills of business owners, which may include hiring consultants to help businesses overcome impediments to growth.

Louisiana Economic Gardening Initiative
The Louisiana Economic Gardening Initiative is a competitive, application-based program that provides Louisiana’s potentially high-growth small businesses with the resources they need to grow and succeed. Through technical assistance and research, an experienced economic gardening team will provide customized services tailored to your business needs.

Louisiana Small Business Development Centers
Louisiana’s Small Business Development Centers (LSBDC) provide one-on-one business counseling, workshops, and seminars throughout the state that can help you evaluate your growth options, prepare your business for expansion and inform you about resources that may be available to help you achieve your goals.

U.S. Small Business Administration
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) provides an information portal for exploring the various growth options you may want to consider, including online training courses and webinars for small business owners.


Doing Business With the Government

For companies looking to grow, doing business with the government can be a great option. Local, state and federal governments are interested in contracting with small businesses to procure needed goods and services. Explore the opportunities below to learn how to expand your procurement opportunities.

Hudson Initiative

Louisiana Economic Development's Hudson Initiative is a certification program that is designed to help eligible Louisiana small businesses gain greater access to purchasing and contracting opportunities that are available at the state government level.

Veteran Initiative

Through the Veteran Initiative program (LaVetBiz), Louisiana Economic Development certifies Louisiana's eligible Veteran-Owned and Service-Connected Disabled Veteran-Owned, small businesses to help them gain greater access to purchasing and contracting opportunities available at the state government level.

Louisiana Office of State Purchasing

The Office of State Purchasing maintains the State's list of bid and contract opportunities and the registered vendor list for state agencies. In order to gain greater access to opportunities under the Hudson and Veteran Initiatives, certified companies must also register with State Purchasing.

Louisiana Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Certification

The U.S. Department of Transportation offers the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) certification for small socially and economically disadvantaged businesses.

SBA 8(a) Business Development and Certification Program

The SBA 8(a) program helps small and disadvantaged businesses compete in the marketplace and helps them gain greater access to federal and private procurement markets.

Federal Business Opportunities

Search Federal Business Opportunities for active federal procurement opportunities and register for email alerts.

Louisiana Procurement Technical Assistance Center

Louisiana's Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC) advises and trains business owners on how to find, obtain, and properly fulfill local, state, and federal government contracts and purchasing opportunities.


PATENTS AND TRADEMARKS

Protecting your intellectual property and company branding can be important components to creating wealth and prosperity within a growing business. Contact one of our experienced partners to guide you through the process.

Louisiana Business & Technology Center

The Technology Transfer Office within the Louisiana Business & Technology Center (LBTC) works with businesses to assess their technical needs, assist with Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant applications, and help facilitate technology transfer between federal agencies and Louisiana businesses.

U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office is the federal agency for granting U.S. patents and registering trademarks to protect your inventions and other unique business assets.


MINORITY, WOMEN-OWNED AND DISADVANTAGED BUSINESS CERTIFICATIONS

Although Louisiana Economic Development’s programs are race and gender neutral, there are several federal, state, and local organizations that provide these types of certifications. Contact one of our resource partners below for additional information.

Louisiana Minority Supplier Development Council

The Louisiana Minority Supplier Development Council (LAMSDC) offers Minority-Owned Business Enterprise (MBE) certification and also helps businesses develop or enhance their minority vendor programs.

Women’s Business Enterprise Council South

Women’s Business Enterprise Council South (WBEC) is a certifying partner organization of the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council, which provides Women’s Business Enterprise (WBE) certification.

Louisiana Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Certification

The U.S. Department of Transportation offers the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) certification for small socially and economically disadvantaged businesses.

SBA 8(a) Business Development and Certification Program

The SBA 8(a) program helps small and disadvantaged businesses compete in the marketplace and helps them gain greater access to federal and private procurement markets.


VETERAN-OWNED BUSINESS RESOURCES

Louisiana supports our veteran-owned businesses by providing the opportunity for growth through government purchasing and contracting. Federal and state governments are committed to growing veteran-owned small businesses.

Veteran Initiative

Through the Veteran Initiative program (LaVetBiz), Louisiana Economic Development certifies Louisiana’s eligible veteran-owned and service-connected disabled veteran-owned, small businesses to help them gain greater access to purchasing and contracting opportunities available at the state government level.

U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization (OSDBU) provides assistance to veteran-owned businesses through their business verification and procurement assistance program and their veteran-owned Small Business Mentor-Protégé program.

U.S. Small Business Administration Office of Veterans Business Development

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Office of Veterans Business Development is responsible for providing business training, counseling and assistance, and overseeing the federal procurement programs for veterans and service-disable veteran-owned small businesses.

SCORE’S Veteran Fast Launch Initiative

Through SCORE’S Veteran Fast Launch Initiative, veterans and active duty military personnel, and members of their immediate family, can receive entrepreneurial training, mentoring, and free or significantly discounted resources for starting a business.


WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT

Louisiana offers workforce development programs that aid in strengthening the state’s economy, giving it a competitive edge.

Incumbent Worker Training Program

The IWTP Small Business Employee Training Program (SBET) is designed to benefit business and industry by assisting in the skill development of existing employees through individual, standardized (off-the shelf) training.

Louisiana Virtual OneStop

The Louisiana Virtual OneStop website provides access to a complete set of employment and training tools designed for job seekers, students, case managers, employers, training providers, workforce professionals, and others.


International Trade

Louisiana is focused on assisting businesses with gaining access to new opportunities in international markets. The following programs and agencies will assist in finding export opportunities and incentives in the global marketplace.

State Trade and Export Promotion Program

The State Trade and Export Promotion (STEP) Program provides up to $9,000 of funding support to small businesses that participate in export development related activities that will help them start exporting or increase the value of their current exports.

U.S. Commercial Service

The U.S. Commercial Service provides business matchmaking services through their coordination of inbound and outbound trade missions, and specific programs to expand exporting opportunities.

U.S. Export Assistance Center

U.S. Export Assistance Centers offer trade counseling, market intelligence, matchmaking, and commercial diplomacy to help U.S. businesses connect with lucrative international business opportunities.

World Trade Center

The World Trade Center in New Orleans conducts import-export training, language courses, consulting, matchmaking and trade missions.