Washington small business grants
Whether you are starting a small business, a retail outlet, or a home-based business; it is important to focus on the initial financial impact. There is a startup cost associated with every kind of business and sometimes, the expenses may exceed your budget. This is where Washington small business grants can be quite helpful. We have created this guide to provide entrepreneurs and first-time business owners with an insight into grant and incentive programs for doing business in Washington, along with the advantages of conducting business in this state.
Doing Business in Washington
Every state in the nation has its advantages and strives towards offering the best possible environment for new businesses. Washington has a strong economy and pro-business climate. The state is home to some of the greatest companies in the world like Costco, Boeing, Amazon, Starbucks, and Microsoft. If you start a new business in this state then you can take advantage of the Washington small business grants and incentive programs. The grants and incentives have been designed around high-growth industries like food manufacturing, aerospace, information and communication technology, and e-commerce, among others.
Why do businesses prefer doing business in Washington?
Entrepreneurs and first-time business owners prefer to establish their businesses in Washington because of the many advantages and opportunities the state has to offer. When you form a business in this state, you can utilize the valuable small business resources that will help companies to achieve their short-term and long-term objectives and goals. The accessibility of resources helps with doing business in Washington and constitutes the pro-business environment in the state. The resources can vary from Washington small business grants to tax credits and exemptions, mentoring programs, programs for emerging leaders, and many more.
- Robust Economy – Washington has a strong economy as it witnessed a Gross Domestic Product of $575 billion. At the backbone of its economy are several industries, startup accelerator programs, advancement of information and communication technology, and availability of skilled labor. It is home to more than 600 thousand businesses including several Fortune 500 and Fortune 1000 companies. Washington has a strong trade infrastructure and is considered the fourth largest in the nation where exports are concerned.
- Pro-Business Climate – One of the reasons why Washington is a good idea for small businesses is the pro-business environment the state has to offer all forms of entities. This environment is driven by several elements like the no personal income or franchise taxes, high quality of life, importing and exporting opportunities through Foreign Trade Zones (FTZ), and the availability of Washington small business grants.
- STEM Pools – One of the advantages of doing business in Washington is that it is a leading state for STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) workers. The state has the necessary infrastructure to impart STEM education, which prepares students for high-growth industries. This type of education enhances the collective potential and opens the doors for creation and advancing solutions for businesses and industries. As a result, the state does not have any scarcity of talent and therefore is considered a decisive feature for doing business in Washington.
Small Business Assistance and Grants in Washington
When you start a business in Washington, there are several resources that you can utilize to establish the company. One such resource is the Washington small business grants as well as other types of financial and economic assistance. A business grant consists of a small amount of seed money, which is awarded by the government and private institutions and does not need to be repaid. If you are wondering why Washington is a good opportunity for small businesses, then the answer lies in these grants along with several other funding and incentive programs.
Associate Development Organizations
Associate Development Organizations (ADOs) in Washington serve as partners for local economic development. This is a local organization that exists in each county and can provide valuable resources to new businesses. They also offer export assistance and support. Although the organization itself doesn’t offer Washington small business incentives, its economic partners have implemented several business assistance programs. Partners like the Export Finance Assistance Center of Washington (EFACW) provide free export finance advice and consultation on payment risk mitigation.
Innovation Partnership Zones
Washington is home to Innovation Partnership Zones (IPZ) and each zone focuses on a specific area of business. Vancouver focuses on applied digital technology accelerators, while Snohomish is considered the Aerospace Convergence Zone. The objective of each of these zones is to create new opportunities for small businesses through innovation and partnership. As a new business, you will be able to build relationships with private and public entities. Your business can benefit from Washington tax incentives that are applicable in these particular zones.
For example: If your business is located in the Tri-Cities Research District and focuses on advanced technology, manufacturing, or clean energy, then you can apply for Washington small business grants and funding programs like the Fuse Fund.
Small Business Flex Fund
If you are planning to start a small business in Washington then one of the important points of business operation is availability of proper funds. There are different types of Washington small business grants and funding options that you can choose from. One of the more popular funding options is the Small Business Flex Fund as it provides access to growth capital for startups, home-based businesses, and other small businesses quickly. It is a simple loan wherein you can borrow up to a maximum of $150,000.
Startup Washington 365
If you plan on doing business in Washington then Startup Washington 365 can be quite beneficial for you. It is a program dedicated to providing business owners and entrepreneurs with a competitive advantage. Starting a business requires a lot of paperwork, but making it operational is another story altogether. Startup Washington 365 provides information and resources concerning the operational details of a business including Washington small business incentives, entrepreneurial education, training, tools on data and analytics, co-working and maker spaces, and other funding sources.
Form Your Startup in Washington Today!
Public Participation Grants
Another popular Washington small business grant is the Public Participation Grant (PPG). This grant, unlike Washington tax incentives, is administered by the Washington Department of Ecology and is aimed at providing funds to small businesses, individuals (sole proprietorship or home-based business), and not-for-profit organizations. The PPG Grant award limit can be up to a maximum of $120,000, and eligibility is based on contaminated site projects.
Export Voucher Program
The export voucher program is one of the reasons why Washington, for a small business, is a growth-oriented option. The program has been implemented by the Washington State Department of Commerce and you can receive only one export voucher in a fiscal year. The export vouchers provided as a part of this program can help with offsetting the exporting expenses of small businesses. The export vouchers are considered one of the key elements of Washington’s small business incentive programs and they cover a wide range of export expenses from digital advertising, to e-commerce platform fees, international shipment of product samples, sales trips to foreign markets, and trade show fees among others. You will be eligible after registering your business in Washington and once your company is considered to be in accordance with the small business size standards.
State Trade Expansion Program (STEP)
The primary goal of the State Trade Expansion Program (STEP), is to provide a variety of financial awards to state governments so that they can assist small businesses that are involved in exports. The financial support as a part of the STEP program can help entrepreneurs to participate in various foreign trade missions, develop e-commerce capabilities, and learn more about exporting their products globally. This Washington small business incentives program provides an award ranging from $2,000-$5,000 depending on the business activity, with a maximum amount that does not exceed more than $10,000 for each eligible small business.
Community Economic Revitalization Board (CERB)
The Community Economic Revitalization Board (CERB) is responsible for providing funding to the Washington state government so that they can support small business growth and expansion. The Washington small business incentives and funding support are primarily for projects that revolve around wastewater, industrial and domestic water, stormwater, telecommunications, public buildings, and port facilities. They provide grants of up to 80% of the total cost of a project with a limit that does not exceed $50,000.
Small Business Retirement Marketplace
The Small Business Retirement Marketplace is a virtual marketplace operated by the Washington Department of Commerce. The objective of this marketplace is to provide low-cost retirement savings plans to small businesses, especially those with less than a hundred employees including self-employed individuals and sole proprietorships. The Department of Financial Institutions has verified each of these retirement plans. The virtual hub allows business owners to compare various retirement plan options. If you plan on doing business in Washington then you can choose from plans like traditional individual retirement account (IRA), traditional 401(k), and Solo 401(k) among others.
Small Business Grants for Women
The number of women and minority-owned businesses (WMBE) has grown steadily over the years in Washington. Today there are 114% more women entrepreneurs, which is approximately 12.3 million women-owned businesses in the nation. This is why one of the popular Washington small business grants is those that are focused on women entrepreneurs. The Amber Grant is one such grant and the grant money awarded can vary from $10,000 to $25,000 annually.
Ready to Start a Business in Washington?
Every new business or startup, whether owned by men or women, requires a certain degree of financial assistance. You may require funds to make the company operational and also to handle the logistics aspects of it. Washington tax incentives and small business grants play a key role in providing much-needed financial support. If you are thinking of starting a new business in this state then the first step will be to register your company. This will help you to apply for these grants, awards, and incentives.
IncParadise is one of the leading registered agents in Washington and an expert incorporation service provider. We can not only help you to start a business in this state, but can also provide additional services that can assist you with all your annual filings including Washington annual reports.