Saturday, April 14, 2012

Real Minority Business Help--Where to Find Help in Minority Business Certification

A lot has been made of "grants to minority business."  Often, these are wildly exaggerated. There are NOT grants to start up most businesses--even when grants are targeted for business, it is for businesses that are already up and running, and are given to encourage a business to expand.  However, there are programs targeted to minority businesses with an eye towards increasing their business prospects.

One of these is minority certification.  If a business is certified as minority owned, it may help them get business from contractors, or state and local governments, who are trying to do more business with minority or disadvantaged businesses.  For instance, the state of Ohio has a searchable list of minority-owned businesses, and EDGE-certified (businesses owned by disadvantaged people) that governments and contractors can use to identify such businesses.  The state of Ohio has a webpage showing you how to get that certification for your business as well as contacts throughout the state that can work with you to get it.  Call 1-800-848-1300 for the nearest office.

There are other centers that help minority businesses with certification and government contract readiness throughout the U.S.  For a list of state minority business certification offices, see this site.  There is also a federal site in the Small Business Administration that can tell you about the federal minority, women, and veterans business programs.

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