SBA's focus is on giving small businesses the tools they need to grow and create jobs. We like to talk about our “3 C’s”—capital, contracting, and counseling.
The first C is capital. If you’re looking for a way to finance your growth, an SBA loan might be what you need. The SBA doesn’t actually make the loans. Instead, we guarantee a percentage of each loan made by lenders who partner with us. Our guarantee reduces the risk, which means these SBA lending partners are more likely to help small businesses that can’t get access to conventional loans.
The second C is contracts. The federal government spends $500 billion a year in contracts. We work with all federal agencies to put at least 23 percent of that money in the hands of small businesses. We also work with small business directly, through training and business development programs, to help them compete for and win contracts.
The third C is counseling. Our nationwide network includes 68 district offices, nearly 900 Small Business Development Centers, 110 Women’s Business Centers, and 350 chapters of SCORE. These business experts offer counseling and training (nearly always free) to over 1 million small business owners each year. If you don’t have a counselor or mentor, you should. Our data shows that businesses that spend three hours or more with an SBA counselor have higher revenue and more employees as a result.
Of course, there’s a lot more to the SBA. From disaster assistance to surety bonds, we’re there with the tools you need. www.sba.gov