What Is the Small Business Administration?

The Small Business Administration (SBA) began in 1953 when President Eisenhower signed the Small Business Act. Since then, did you know that it’s faced threats from a few administrations to have its doors closed permanently?

The SBA’s primary function is to support and promote the economy, and it does this by offering help to small businesses. What’s more, it aims to provide counseling to anyone trying to start a new business or improve on one. If you’ve never heard of it before, stay with us while we break it down.

What Is a Small Business?

According to the Small Business Administration, a small business is one where less than 500 employees are employed. Beyond the company’s size, there are other factors they consider to determine if your business fits the designation of a small business.

They look at these things to determine if your business meets their criteria include:

  • Is it a for-profit or non-profit organization?
  • Is its place of business within the US?
  • Does it primarily operate in the US or does it make a substantial contribution to the US economy?
  • Is it owned and operated independently?
  • What is its dominance ranking nationally?

It doesn’t matter what type of legal business formation you’ve used either. It can be a corporation, sole-proprietorship, LLC, or partnership.

What Assistance Does the Small Business Administration Provide?

When most people think of the SBA, it’s usually for business loans. Still, before you get exterior building signs put up, there’s much more that they can do to help you.

Business Loan Assistance

To be clear, the Small Business Administration does not provide loans. What they do is vouch for you almost like a co-signer letting your lender know that you’re ok. It’s a loan guarantee to them.

Help During a Disaster

One of the most crucial things the SBA does is help small businesses when a disaster hits them. There are two types of assistance available, economic injury and physical damage.

Often they will set up select service locations to help expedite the whole process. Loans taken at this time are like any other loan coordinated by the SBA and are guarantees to the lenders giving the loan.

More information on this and other disaster programs is on their website.

Become A Government Contractor

The Small Business Administration works with small businesses that want to compete for government contracts to keep competition fair. What’s more, some government agencies keep percentages of their business just for small companies, which leaves room for a business like yours.

Training, Information and Face-to-Face Help

The Small Business Administration set up a partner group called SCORE (this was previously known as the Service Corps of Retired Executives). Throughout the US, there are local chapters of SCORE to get help on various topics like business plan writing, business startup, marketing, and the many questions they may have.

There are other resources you can refer to for local information or training:

  • A variety of course and subject can be found in the SBA Learning Center
  • There are over 900 locations for Small Business Development Centers
  • Many other resources are located in The “Tools” Site to learn anything related to small business

What’s Next

That’s it about the Small Business Administration. If you found this article helpful, come back to read the other compelling articles on this site.