Resources to Help Start, Grow, or Fund Your Business
There are many resources online that can help provide information on starting or growing your business as well as gaining access to capital for your business. The links below provide information on a wide range of entrepreneurial subjects. Links on this page are for information purposes only; they do not constitute an endorsement by Spruce Root.
The U.S. Small Business Administration www.sba.gov offers a short self-paced training exercise that is an introduction to financing options for your business. Topics include; determining your financial needs, loans, grants, venture capital, angel investors, crowd funding and other financial options available to small businesses.
Venturize http://www.venturize.org/ is a program from the Opportunity Finance Network, a nonprofit membership organization whose members have decades of experience working with young businesses. A great site to help compare different types of lenders and financing opportunities.
How to Create Financial and Sales Projections:
Additional Borrower Resources:
Additional Funding Resources
Financing can often be the one obstacle preventing an entrepreneur from starting a successful business. Entrepreneurs for the most part do not have access to “free money” through grants. However, there are options.
Learn the basics for building a budget for your business.
Learn how to choose an accountant who is also an advisor.
Ever wonder what happened to that crowdfunding boom?
Investors’ Circle seeks early-stage companies whose businesses address significant social or environmental issues.
Additional Funding Opportunities:
- Spruce Root's Path to Prosperity Business Development Competition
Business Model Canvas:
This video gives a great method for mapping out the key components of a business plan. The Business Model Canvas, is a strategic management and entrepreneurial tool. It allows you to describe, design, challenge, invent, and pivot your business model.
This series of short videos gives a nice overview of triple bottom line concepts and makes a strong business case for sustainability.
Additionally, articles on social entrepreneurship can be found here.
entrepreneur and Business Planning Resources
General Resources for Startups:
The U.S. Small Business Administration offers technical assistance, a variety of loan and other financing programs, and other resources to help a business get started and grow. Their website features many articles on starting and managing a business.
SCORE is a nonprofit association that provides education and volunteer mentors for entrepreneurs. Mentors are available to deliver free help both by email and in person. Its closest chapters are in Anchorage and Seattle.
How to Develop your Business Plan:
The U.S. Small Business Administration has a Business Plan Tool that provides a step-by-step guide to writing a business plan. You write the plan by answering questions, and save it on-line so you can return later to edit or update. You must first register for a free account.
Here’s an article on writing Executive Summaries.
Additional links to business plan templates, outlines and advice:
- National Telecommunications and Information Administration (business plan outline)
- SCORE (business plans and financial statement templates)
The State of Alaska
The State's Business website is the go-to place for information on starting a business in Alaska including the publication, 'Establishing a Business in Alaska,' which provides detailed information and assistance for the Alaskan entrepreneur.
This web portal provides support to entrepreneurs through links to information on topics such as Start-up Resources, Growing Your Business, Marketing, and Legal Services. After answering a few questions about your business and the type of assistance you need, a list of organizations that provide business help in your area is provided.
Alaska Small Business Development Center