November 24, 2020

Elevating Louisiana's Small Businesses

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Here at LWCC, we know that small businesses are the backbone of our local economies. That’s why, in honor of Small Business Saturday — coming up November 28 — we partnered with Louisiana Economic Development (LED) to share resources available to Louisiana’s 347,436 small businesses.

As 2020 nears its long-awaited end, small businesses across the nation are in the thick of planning for 2021. This year has been tough on businesses of all shapes and sizes, but none so much as the little guys. In fact, a mid-June survey by the National Small Business Association found that 99 percent of respondents were “very” or “somewhat” worried about the economic impact from coronavirus.

LED shares our mission to elevate Louisiana by cultivating jobs and economic opportunity for the people of Louisiana. The state agency is offering a plethora of educational, managerial and financial programs that bolster small business opportunities:

  • Small and Emerging Business Development Program: SEBD provides training in marketing, computer skills, accounting, business planning, development, and legal and industry-specific support. Geared to for-profits of $1.5 million or less net worth that anticipate adding jobs in the future.
  • Hudson Initiative: Provides small businesses with greater potential for access to state procurement and public contract opportunities.
  • Veterans Initiative: Helps veteran-owned and disabled, service-oriented small businesses to obtain state procurement and public contract opportunities.
  • Louisiana Veterans First Business Initiative: Enables veterans, active-duty or reserve military – or Gold Star spouses who have at least 51 percent ownership in a business – to gain certification that recognizes and promotes their businesses.
  • The Pathway to Assist Veteran Entrepreneurs Program: Offers Louisiana veterans the opportunity to gain knowledge and skills that are necessary to effectively start or manage a business.
  • Bonding Assistance Program: Provides bond guarantees up to 25 percent or $100,000, whichever is less, for qualifying contractors who need surety bonds for private or public jobs.
  • Louisiana Contractors Accreditation Program: Provides business training focusing on expanding understanding of the construction industry.
  • Mentor-Protégé Recognition Program: Connects Louisiana-based small and emerging businesses to technical and developmental assistance provided by large mentor companies from various sectors.
  • Economic Gardening Initiative: To accelerate growth and help companies convert their innovation to sales in new out-of-state markets, Economic Gardening provides customized business intelligence via a team of highly skilled consultants in market research, geographic information systems (GIS) and digital marketing.
  • CEO Roundtables: Empowers executives to discuss business practices and management strategies with peers who face similar growth challenges.

LWCC encourages small businesses to take advantage of these resources to help them grow and thrive in 2021. Click here to check out the full list of LED’s small business programs and see if your business qualifies.

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