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Your Plan

Benjamin Franklin once said: "If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail!"

Writing out a business plan allows you to organize your thoughts and create a roadmap for your business. You can use the SBA Business Plan Guide and SCORE Business Plan Template to help.

Next: Your Name

Partners and Counseling

Some of our partners offer free, expert guidance to aid the planning of your business. Read through the descriptions and find the counseling that will best fit your own individual needs.

+ SCORE Counselors to America’s Small Business

Phone: 401-226-0077 Website: www.riscore.org

SCORE’s business experts offer real-world advice and know-how. The counselors represent every business area. A SCORE business professional can answer your questions in a face-to-face, confidential consultation.

Services offered:

  • Start-up Assistance
  • Business Planning
  • Financing
  • Managing a Business
  • Managing Employees
  • Customer Relations
  • Accounting/Budgeting
  • Cash-flow Management
  • Tax Planning
  • Marketing, Sales and Communications
  • Government Contracting
  • Franchising
  • International Trade
  • Buying & Selling a Business
  • Information Technology and Computing
  • eCommerce
  • Legal Issues (e.g., incorporation)
+ Rhode Island Small Business Development Center (SBDC)

401-874-7232 www.risbdc.org

The Rhode Island Small Business Development Center (RISBDC) at the University of Rhode Island provides local small business owners with the services and expertise they need to succeed including no-cost expert counseling, relevant training and access to important resources.

Services Offered:

  • Business Planning
  • Financial Statement Development
  • Loan Application Preparation
  • Establishing Your Business
  • Strategic Planning
  • Marketing and Brand Building
  • Licenses, Permits and Business Regulations
  • International Trade Assistance 
+ Center for Women & Enterprise (CWE)

401-277-0800 www.cweonline.org

Partners & Counseling Center for Women & Enterprise (CWE) CWE offers education, training, technical assistance, women's business enterprise certification and access to both debt and equity capital to entrepreneurs at every stage of business development.

Services offered:

  • Education & Training
  • Online Learning
  • Financial Education & Support
  • Networking Opportunities
  • Consulting & Mentoring
+ Rhode Island Commerce Corporation

401-278-9100 commerceri.com

Rhode Island Commerce Corporation is a quasi-public organization that offers a broad portfolio of client services and financing programs to help companies — both big and small — grow.

Services offered:

  • Locate Resources and Financing
  • Creating a Productive Timeline
  • Incentives
  • Resource Network
+ Small Business Administration (SBA)

401-528-4561 www.sba.gov

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) was created in 1953 as an independent agency of the federal government to aid, counsel, assist and protect the interests of small business concerns, to preserve free competitive enterprise and to maintain and strengthen the overall economy of our nation.

Services Offered:

  • Financial assistance for new or existing businesses through guaranteed loans made by area bank and non-bank lenders.
  • Free counseling, advice and information on starting, better operating or expanding a small business through (SCORE) Counselors to America’s Small Business.
  • Assistance to businesses owned and controlled by socially and economically disadvantaged individuals through the Minority Enterprise Development Program.
  • Women's Business Ownership Representatives are available to advise women business owners.
  • Special loan programs are available for businesses involved in international trade.
  • If you're a veteran, you can get business counseling and information about SBA guaranteed loans.
+ Minority Business Enterprises (MBE)

401-574-8640 odeo.ri.gov

MBECO promotes the development of certified Minority Business Enterprises (MBE), Women Business Enterprises (WBE), and Disadvantaged Business Enterprises (DBE). It does this by facilitating their participation in Rhode Island's business and economic development opportunities.

Services offered:

  • Certification
  • Enforcement
  • Business Assistance
  • Advocacy

Goals of the office:

  • Increasing the number of MBE, WBE and DBE firms available for contract competition.
  • Fostering relationships between MBE, WBE and DBE firms with state agencies, quasi-state agencies, purchasing agents and prime vendors.
  • Providing opportunities for growth and development of MBE, WBE, and DBE firms.
  • Ensuring compliance with the participation of MBE, WBE and DBE firms on all state procurement activities.
+ John H. Chafee Center for International Business

401-232-6407 chafeecenter.bryant.edu

The Chafee Center houses the World Trade Center and Export Assistance Center for the state of Rhode Island. The center provides comprehensive services on all aspects of international trade including trade data, training, consulting, trade show and trade mission support.

Services offered:

  • International Market Research
  • Market Entry Strategies
  • Developing global pricing models
  • SWOT Analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats)
  • International Business Plan Writing
  • Assessment of Global Supply Chain Strategy

Networking

+ Chambers of Commerce

Chambers of Commerce are associations designed to promote and protect the interests of the business community. Chambers monitor important issues, legislation and business trends within your specific community. They also offer networking opportunities. Did you know consumers are more likely to do business with a company if it’s a member of their local chamber of commerce?

Block Island
401-462-2982
www.blockislandchamber.com

Central Rhode Island
401-732-1100
www.centralrichamber.com

Charlestown
401-364-3878
www.charlestownrichamber.com

East Bay
401-245-0750
www.eastbaychamberri.org

East Greenwich
401-885-0020
www.eastgreenwichchamber.com

East Providence
401-438-1212
www.eastprovchamber.com

Greater Cranston
401-785-3780
www.cranstonchamber.com

Greater Providence
401-521-5000
www.provchamber.com

Ocean Community
401-596-7761
www.westerlychamber.org

Hispanic American Chamber of Commerce of Rhode Island
401-331-2615
www.rihispanicchamber.org

Jamestown
401-423-3650
www.jamestownrichamber.com

Narragansett
401-783-7121
www.narragansettcoc.com

Newport County
401-847-1600
www.newportchamber.com

North Kingstown
401-295-5566
www.northkingstown.com

Northern Rhode Island
401-334-1000
www.nrichamber.com

Southern Rhode Island
401-783-2801
www.skchamber.com