In our opinion, every month is Women’s History Month, so we are going to continue celebrating female entrepreneurs and their badass partners all year long. And while women across the country are accomplishing amazing things on their own, there’s nothing wrong with taking advantage of one (or many!) of the programs for female entrepreneurs offered by the SBA. It's not just the PPP that the Small Business Administration offers, the SBA has been helping small businesses in many ways for years.
The Small Business Administration (SBA) provides a wide variety of resources to help women business owners start and grow their companies. The agency is best known for its SBA Loans, especially right now with the PPP dominating most business owners' discussions. Throughout the years, however, the SBA and its partner lending agencies (banks and other approved lenders) have provided a wide variety of resources for business owners (women and men alike).
First established in July 1953 by President Eisenhower, the SBA supports small businesses. Small businesses are often credited with being the engine that propels job growth and the overall economy. The SBA has provided over 20 million loans to small businesses across the country, originated through financial institutions that partner with the agency.
Training for Women-Owned Businesses
The SBA offers a program called DreamBuilder that offers training in business ownership. At the conclusion of the DreamBuilder program, participants leave with a business plan to launch a business (or grow an existing one).
The SBA’s Office of Women’s Business Ownership (OWBO) helps female business owners through programs coordinated by the SBA’s local district offices. OWBO offers access to capital, business training, counseling, and guidance in applying for federal contracts.
Federal Contracting Assistance
According to SBA figures, the federal government spends approximately $500 billion in contracts every year and is required to allot 23 percent of its budget to small business vendors. The US government sets a goal of having 5% of contracts awarded to women-owned businesses. In 2016, the federal government awarded 4.79% of its contracts to women-owned small businesses.
Through the Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization, the SBA connects small business owners with government buyers at outreach events and expos.
Whether you rely on financing from your inner circle or banks or if your business is lookin fro ways to diversify funding sources, there is something to be gained from exploring the resources offered by the SBA. Visit their website to learn more!