Federal Resources for Minority Businesses

For families, business owners, recent college graduates and local leaders, economic opportunity should know no barriers.  Senator Brown is committed to helping eliminate the obstacles to economic growth by encouraging economic inclusion and job creation for minority and women owned business and entrepreneurs.  The following programs provide helpful information regarding federal and state resources for minority and women owned businesses.   

Minority Business Development Agency Opens in Cleveland

In September 2011, Senator Brown helped launch the grand opening of Ohio’s Minority Business Development Center.  Located in Cleveland, Ohio, the center provides strategic business services for minority small business owners and entrepreneurs and can help you with financing and contract opportunities.  Call the Ohio MBDA office at (216) 592-2251 for assistance.

Interested in starting a business or learning about federal resources to help your business succeed? 

 The Small Business Administration’s Minority Owned Program has federal resources available to help your business succeed.   From starting your business to financing your business to strategically developing your business, the SBA is the place to start. 

Are you the owner of a small disadvantaged business? 

If so, the SBA 8(a) program offered through the Small Business Administration might help you compete in the market place by providing a wide variety of assistance to firms that are owned and controlled at least 51% by socially and economically disadvantaged individuals.   As an 8(a) participating firm, you can receive sole-source contracts and can form joint ventures to bid on larger competitive contracts. 

Is your business located in a Historically Underutilized Business (HUB) Zone? 

If so, you might be eligible to participate in the SBA’s HubZone program.  The program encourages economic development in distressed areas by providing preferences to small businesses located in the zones, including access to more federal contracting opportunities.   To qualify, your business must be located in a designated area.

Interested in business opportunities with the U.S. Department of Transportation? 

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization was created to help ensure that small business owners are treated fairly and have the opportunity to compete for opportunities with the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Are you looking to export your goods or services to new markets around the world?

The U.S. Commercial Service provides counseling and trade assistance to business owners looking to begin exporting or expand to new global markets.

As the official export credit agency of the United States, the Export-Import Bank (Ex-Im Bank) helps domestic companies access global markets by providing resources that help fill gaps in trade financing. The Ex-Im Bank provides direct loans, export credit insurance, working capital guarantees, and loan guarantees to large and small businesses.


State Resources 

Looking for state programs to help grow your business? 

The State of Ohio’s Minority Business Enterprise Division can help create, grow and develop minority businesses throughout Ohio.  The State of Ohio offers resources to help with access to capital through loan and bonding programs and provides technical and business assistance for disadvantaged businesses.

Certify your minority business to access more opportunities with Ohio government agencies

The Minority Business Enterprise (MBE)/Encouraging Diversity, Growth & Equity (EDGE) Unit can help you learn more about the State of Ohio’s set-aside programs and help you get started towards certification.  MBE/EDGE Certification can facilitate access to state government contracts and business services.

Looking to expand or locate your minority business in Ohio?

The Ohio Minority Direct Loan Program provides direct loans to Ohio businesses looking to expand or locate in Ohio if they will create jobs.  The loans can be used for land or building acquisition, new construction, renovation, acquisition of machinery or equipment, and soft costs such as working capital, refinancing, relocation, supplies, and more.

Access Capital through the new Small Business Credit Initiative

Through Senator Brown’s efforts, the State of Ohio received $55 million from the U.S. Department of Treasury under the State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI).   The initiative aims to leverage private lending to help more Ohio businesses receive the financing they need to succeed.  The SSBCI includes the Ohio Capital Access Program, the Collateral Enhancement Program, and the Targeted Investment Program.