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BUSINESS START-UP

How To Start Your Own Business As A Military Spouse

Military spouses make great entrepreneurs, and small business ownership can be a transportable, flexible vocation that supports a military career. SBA knows this. So, as part of our mission, SBA’s Office of Veterans Business Development (OVBD) empowers military spouse entrepreneurs by providing the same counseling and training, access to capital, and disaster assistance that are provided to servicemembers and veterans. We also build capacity for those who want to compete in the federal contracting landscape. You serve your country, and if you are pursuing small business ownership or other self-employment, SBA serves you!

TRAINING

COUNSELING

ACCESS TO CAPITAL

DISASTER ASSISTANCE

CONTRACTING

READ MORE ON THE SBA SITE


Starting and Growing
Your Business

Video Series (YouTube)

ADP

Introduction

CH 1 Transitioning

CH 2 Business Planning

CH 3 Financing Your Business

CH 4 Marketing Your Business

CH 5 Hiring

CH 6 Winning Contracts

CH 7 Networking

CH 8 Customer Service

CH 9 Growing Your Business

CH 10 Inspiration


CAPABILITIES STATEMENT

Capability Statement
by Kim Langenberg

PTAC

Capabilities Statements are a one page, one sided resume of your company. There are several categories that you need to have in your CS.

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While in Washington, DC attending an APTAC (Association of PTACs) training conference, Gloria Larkin, President of TargetGov, gave a presentation on the Capabilities Statement (CS). I would like to share these important steps in preparing your Capabilities Statement for presentation to federal agency buyers and prime contractors: what to put into them, what they might look like, who to send them to, what NOT to put in them, the three different types of CSs, and a simple evaluation that you can use to see how your CS measures up. These are a must when marketing to the Federal Government; we found out they ask for a CS when talking with them. So it is imperative to have a CS developed before going to talk to a buyer.

Capabilities Statements are a one page, one sided resume of your company. There are several categories that you need to have in your CS.

1. Always title it “Capabilities Statement” (or “Capability Statement”) at the top of the page. I know that commercial industry might call it something different, but you need to talk the talk of the government, and they call it “Capabilities Statement.”

2. Always put in your Contact Information: company name, contact name, phone number, and email at the top of the page. You know the frustration of calling a company and not knowing who it is that you want to talk to. Bad business practice!

3. "COMPANY DATA: Here you will want to include:

NAICS – you don’t need to put the title that goes with the code. The person viewing this will know what NAICS they buy in. Don’t use up the space
For DoD use your PSC and/or FSC codes
GSA Schedule Contract Number(s)
BPAs and other contract number(s)
Socio-economic certifications: SB, WOSB, 8(a), HUBZone, SDVOB
Certifications (ISO, ASCI, DBE (Disadvantaged Business Enterprise – through MDOT), etc.)
1 to 2 sentence summary of highlights (i.e. Financial stability, number of employees, capability, teams)

4. CORE COMPETENCIES is a must. Even though this tells, briefly, what your company does, when you are targeting a certain agency, you want to focus on them and their requirements. First you need to research the agency you are focusing on. Look on their website, see what their mission and vision statements are; do your homework before you send out your CS to the person you are marketing to. When focusing on an agency the introduction of your Core Competencies might read: XYZ, Inc. provides the services the Army requires to meet its mission of ____________. Relate your core competencies to that agency’s needs. The best way is to follow up that introduction is to use bullet points talking about your core competencies. Keep in mind you have other categories that will be in this Capabilities Statement, so try not to overlap. You only have one page, so use your space wisely.

5. PAST PERFORMANCE needs to have two to three key contracts that relate to that agency’s need. Even if it is not a government contract, you can use commercial work that is similar to what the agency might need. Some info to put into this section: Start with who you did the work for in Bold Letters; tell them how you were effective in meeting their needs; how long the contract was for; name the type of contract that was used (GSA Schedule, IDIQ (Indefinite Delivery Indefinite Quantity, etc.), what was the amount, contact name of buyer, title, phone and email. If you have contracts that do not relate to what that agency may need, leave it off for another one that is more relevant. It might read like “Department of Defense: Provided ABC services to enable the effective use of x-y-z thereby reducing costs by $xxx,xxx over three years.” Name the contract vehicle and the amount. Give contact reference, name, title, phone and email. Don’t forget subcontracts that you have performed or an employee you may have that has worked on a specific contract. Again, make sure it relates to what that agency is looking for. Even though you want to put in a contract that is not relevant to the agency, refrain. It will do more damage than good.

6. DIFFERENTIATORS What unique features or benefits of what you provide (product or service) that make you stand out from the crowd. Some examples are: location; training; ISO; exclusives; relationships; experience. And how does this benefit your target?

7. FOCUS ON

Agency needs; that specific decision maker; or an upcoming contract
Highlight benefits
Incorporate metrics
Straight forward, easy to understand
Better to have only 2 or 3 strong differentiators than lots of mediocre or poor examples

IT SHOULD NOT BE OR INCLUDE:

Wordy
Socioeconomic Certifications
Generic Statements
Static, never changing
One type fits all (you are different!)
“Quality” People, Services, Products (of course you are quality!)
“100” or xx years of experience
“Solutions Provider”
“Best in Class,” “World Class,” “Best of Breed” (unless of course you raise horses), or other superlatives

Here are some questions you might ask yourself about your differentiators:

Why did your biggest customer want you?
How/why is your company the best choice for the needs of this opportunity/agency?
What is it about your services/products that make you stand out from the rest?
What is it about your people that give you the advantage over your competitors?
Why are your products better solutions than the others that are available?
Is your business located near the agency?
Get the idea?

So now you have this great Capabilities Statement,
HOW DO I FORMAT IT?

One side or one page
Create in Word, save in a searchable PDF
Do NOT save as a graphic file
Under 1MB
NAME AS: YourCompanyName_CapabilitiesStatement.pdf

You want to stand out from the rest so use your name
Don’t let them guess what you have attached
AND don’t forget to send it as a PDF. The government has security around their computers, so a Word doc may not go through, but a PDF will.


Now from our DC training, Gloria said there are
THREE TYPES OF CAPABILITY STATEMENTS.

1. THE DOOR OPENER: These are used to begin or refresh a relationship in the marketing process. Maybe you want to get in to see a decision-maker; this would be a great way to let them know what you can do. During a meeting you can pass out your CS as a way to introduce what you can do. Maybe you haven’t been in contact with someone for a while and want to reacquaint them with what you can do, or you’ve introduced a new service or product in your company and need to let your customers know about that.

At an event where there will be many agencies present, you can have a generic Capabilities Statement (CS). But, if you are going to an agency event, introducing yourself to a specific agency, or specific event (i.e. an event where it’s all about IT), you will want to tailor your CS to that agency/person/event, maybe even to go so far as to speak to the agency in a specific location.

If you are introducing a new product, let them know what the benefits are.

You can use your CS in person to person meetings at conferences, vendor outreach sessions, Agency and military base events, Matchmaking, associations, social events. How about on your web site, in an email, a blog you manage, or your LinkedIn account?

Who do you want to target? To name a few: Federal Agencies, Prime Contractors, Teaming Partners, Small Business representatives, contracting and acquisition staff, or program and technical managers. Your CS will have different content for each of these, you are going to be specific about who your target so you get their attention.

2. Requested as Part of a Sources Sought or RFI Response: The Federal government needs to do their market research to make sure they know industry can supply that service/product (maybe it’s already a commercial product), what vendors might be able to supply that service/product, or if two or more small businesses have an interest (i.e. a Small Business set-aside such as 8(a), Woman Owned Small Business (WOSB), Service Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business (SDVOSB), or Historically Underutilized Business Zone (HUBZone)). Maybe the government will get an idea what it might cost them to purchase that service/product (prices are not usually sought out for an RFI). They can do their market research by asking industry to give them answers to questions. Keep in mind that it may never come to the point of being able to bid on a solicitation, they are just doing research.

In a Sources Sought, they may get very specific, so you will want to give them what they ask for, but in the format of a CS (one sided-one page); nothing more or nothing less.

3. Required in a RFP Response: There may be times where the government would ask for a vendor’s Capabilities Statement in the RFP. You will be specific in what they are asking for in the RFP, nothing more or nothing less. What you might want to include is:

Narrative of capabilities relating to that particular opportunity
Core competencies that relate to that particular opportunity
Resumes of key staff who will work on this award
Technical expertise relating to the opportunity
Differentiators relating to the opportunity
Page range may be different from the first two CSs (5-15+ pages)

Regardless of the type of CS, you want it to be clear and easy to understand.

Poor CSs can lead to doors that will not open (Oh, no!), maybe even highlight your companies weaknesses, proving you are not competent (even though we know better), showing your company is a risk for them to hire, shows you have not researched the agency or opportunity that they are providing, and may show you don’t understand who your customer is (yes government buyers are the customer).

So WHEN would you use your Capabilities Statements?

PERSON TO PERSON

Conferences
Vendor outreach events
Agency events
Matchmaking events
Associations and other social events

REFERALS

From those who are decision makers

VIRTUAL

Email, Website, Blog, LinkedIn

So WHO should I target when I send out my CS?

Federal Agencies (not Departments – there are many agencies under each Department)
Prime Contractors that you want to subcontract with
Teaming Partners- if you can’t do the whole job and need to look for someone to team with
Small business representatives

Small business specialists (SBS), OSDBU, SADBU, SBLO (to find what they stand for, go to http://www.dau.mil/pubscats/PubsCats/13th_Edition_Glossary.pdf Contracting and acquisition staff CO or KO, COTR

Program and technical managers

PM, end-user

How’s your Capabilities Statement? Give yourself a test. Here’s an informal grading system to see how your Capabilities Statement stands up. 100 point scale, each section is worth 20 points.

Named Capabilities Statement
Core Competencies tailored to your agency (if not used for a general event)
Past Performance tailored to an agency and/or requirements
Differentiators tailored to an agency and/or requirements
Company Data complete

So now you know what a Capabilities Statement is, how many there are, and when to use the correct one. Using a one-size-fits-all is not the most impressive way to talk with the target person. If you would like to have me take a look at your Capabilities Statement, I would be glad to do that for you and give you my opinion.

Email it as a pdf to


Capability Statement
PowerPoint

PTAC

A snapshot of your company highlighting it's unique features.

DOWNLOAD POWERPOINT


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CVE VERIFICATION

Running The VetBiz Gauntlet
How to Get Out Alive (Verified)

Legal Meets Pratical, LLC

VIEW CVE VIDEO ON VIMEO


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EXPORTING

A Wealth of International Resources

American Small Business

Small Business Administration Logo

READ MORE:

One of the biggest challenges to both current and potential exporters is access to accurate, reliable information about the markets they want to tap. One of the most common ways large exporters address this issue is by contracting “expert” help in each country or region where they do business, that is, a local representative or source in position to provide both information and market analysis. This type of service can be -and usually is- costly. If you happen to be a large exporter, cost may not be a major issue, but for small exporters this challenge can be daunting.

READ MORE ABOUT EXPORTING


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FINANCE

VETERAN SMALL BUSINESS AWARD

Street Shares Logo

Three Awards Monthly

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AWARDS

Three awards will be given to winning applicants each month:

1st Place: $5,000
2nd Place: $3,000
3rd Place: $2,000

ELIGIBILITY

Applicant must be a veteran, reserve or active duty member of any of the United States Armed Forces, OR a spouse of a military member or veteran

Applicant must be a U.S. person and at least 21 years old

Applicant's business must be a legal entity(sole proprietorship or legally incorporated LLC, S-Corp, or C-Corp or formal partnership)under the laws of any U.S. jurisdiction

Applicant must own at least 50 percent of the business

SELECTION PROCESS

Applicants qualify and apply. After applicants have been submitted for the month, the Foundation will choose 5-10 finalists. Based on five criteria below:

1. Business idea
2. Use of award funds and potential impact
3. Product-market fit
4. Team and company history
5. Influence of the business on the military and veterans community

Finalist profiles are then posted on the Foundation website for public vote to determine the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place awards

DEADLINES

Our award program runs monthly. Business owners have until the end of each month to apply. Winners will be announced mid-month.

APPLICATION PROCESS

1. Download the featured eBook
2. Visit the Foundation blog
3. Write a business summary
4. Create a short video

streetshares.com/foundation

READ MORE


The Ultimate Small Business
Financing Guide

Operation Veteran Empowerment

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Veterans in record number are out of work and many are considering starting their own business.

However, the majority of these talented men and women do not possess the knowledge needed to properly finance their operations.

The simple truth is that veteran businesses in all stages fail and will continue to do so without the necessary solid practical foundation and knowledge respecting all aspects of business financing in the real world..

READ MORE


8 Common Pitfalls to Avoid
When Seeking Money
From Investors

Washington Business Journal

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Entrepreneurs trying to raise money from investors frequently use the term “smart money” to describe the type of investors they are seeking. “Smart money” is money raised from experienced, well-informed investors who provide both money and additional value-added benefits to the company.

VISIT WEBSITE


Endless Crowds

Fundraising

READ MORE:

Endless Crowds is a crowd-fundraising platform exclusively for members of the militart, firefighters, police and their affiliate organizations.

READ FLYER

VISIT WEBSITE


TrustLeaf

Fundraising

READ MORE:

We believe that the best people to loan you money for your small business are the people who believe in you most: your friends and family.

VISIT WEBSITE


StreetShares
On-Line Funding

StreetShares Logo

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Veteran owned and operated, we understand the unique challenges you face when funding your business. Every small business has a story. You should have a chance to tell yours.

We're the only place where veteran business owners can “pitch” directly to investors, who compete in an eBay-like auction to back part of the loan to the business.

Tired of being ignored by the big banks? At StreetShares we help fund your business quickly - without putting you through the ringer. See what we have to offer:

FAST & FREE APPLICATION - If approved, there's no obligation. If you choose to accept your loan offer, you'll have your money in as few as 7 days.

NO RED TAPE - Only been in business for 1 year? Don't want to put up all your business assets to get approved? No problem.

YOUR STORY MATTERS - And it can help lower your rate. Share your story on your application and our investors compete to fund you... by offering you a lower rate.

YOUR FIRST PAYMENT IS ON US - There's also no application fee or prepayment penalty, and we personally back a portion of your loan.

DOWNLOAD FLYER PDF Rwgistration Link

VISIT WEBSITE


Virage LTD.
Small Business Lending Group

DOWNLOAD PRODUCTS & OVERVIEW PDF

DOWNLOAD MORE PRODUCTS PDF


Is VC Funding Right For You?

Venture Capital

Inc. Logo

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Venture capital can either take your company to the next level--or tear it apart. Here's how to decide whether VC funding is right for your business.

READ VENTURE CAPITAL ARTICLE


SBA Announces New Measures
to Help Get Small Business Loans
Into the Hands of Veterans

Small Business Administration Logo

WASHINGTON – The U.S Small Business Administration (SBA) today announced new measures to help get small business loans into the hands of veterans by setting the borrower upfront fee to zero for all veteran loans authorized under the SBA Express program up to $350,000. This initiative will start on January 1 and continue through the end of the fiscal year.

CONTINUE STORY AT SBA.GOV

PDF Vet Advantage Fact Sheet VET ADVANTAGE RENEWAL TO 2015

PDF Vet Advantage Fact Sheet DOWNLOAD VET ADVANTAGE FACT SHEET


Microloan Programs

Small Business Administration Logo

The Microloan program provides loans up to $50,000 to help small businesses and certain not-for-profit childcare centers start up and expand. The average microloan is about $13,000.

The U.S. Small Business Administration provides funds to specially designated intermediary lenders, which are nonprofit community-based organizations with experience in lending as well as management and technical assistance. These intermediaries administer the Microloan program for eligible borrowers.

READ MORE:

Eligibility Requirements

Each intermediary lender has its own lending and credit requirements. Generally, intermediaries require some type of collateral as well as the personal guarantee of the business owner.

Use of Microloan Proceeds

Microloans can be used for:

Working capital

Inventory or supplies

Furniture or fixtures

Machinery or equipment

Proceeds from an SBA microloan cannot be used to pay existing debts or to purchase real estate.

Repayment Terms, Interest Rates, and Fees

Loan repayment terms vary according to several factors:

Loan amount

Planned use of funds

Requirements determined by the intermediary lender

Needs of the small business borrower

The maximum repayment term allowed for an SBA microloan is six years.

Interest rates vary, depending on the intermediary lender and costs to the intermediary from the U.S. Treasury. Generally, these rates will be between 8 and 13 percent.

Application Process

Microloans are available through certain nonprofit, community-based organizations that are experienced in lending and business management assistance. If you apply for SBA microloan financing, you may be required to fulfill training or planning requirements before your loan application is considered. This business training is designed to help you launch or expand your business.

Find a Microloan Provider

To apply for a Microloan, you must work with an SBA approved intermediary in your area. Approved intermediaries make all credit decisions on SBA microloans. For more information, you can contact your local SBA District Office or view the list of Participating Microloan Intermediary Lenders in the Attachments list below.

INDIANA

Flagship Enterprise Center, Inc.
2701 Enterprise Drive
Anderson, IN 46013

Microlending: DeWayne Landwehr

Phone: 765-622-0800
Fax: 765-622-0211
Email:
Website: www.flagship.org

Service Area: Hamilton, Hancock, Madison, Rush, Shelby, Tipton, Grant, Delaware, Henry, Marion

————————

SEED Corp.
501 N. Morton Street Suite 101
Bloomington, IN 47404

Executive Director: Terri Brown
Microlending: Terri Brown

Phone: 812-339-8937
Fax: 812-335-7552
Email:

Service Area: Owen, Morgan, Monroe, Lawrence, Jennings, Jackson, Greene, Decatur, Bartholomew, Brown

MICHIGAN

Center for Empowerment and
Economic Development (CEED)

2002 Hogback Road Suite 17
Ann Arbor, MI 48105

Executive Director: Michelle Richards
Microlending: Michelle Richards

Phone: 734-677-1400
Fax: 734-677-1465
Email:

Service Area: Livingston, Oakland, Wayne, Washtenaw, Monroe

————————

Detroit Midtown Micro-Enterprise Fund
440 Burroughs, Suite 140
Detroit, MI 48202

Executive Director: Lorenzo Thurman
Microlending: Lorenzo Thurman

Phone: 313-263-4032
Fax: 313-972-1716
Email:
Website: metro-community.org

Service Area: Wayne, Oakland

————————

Entrepreneur Institute of Mid-Michigan
105 W. Allegan Suite 10
Lansing, MI 48933

Microlending: Denise Peek

Phone: 517-853-5890
Fax: 517-853-5891
Email:
Website: yourfoundationforbusiness.org

Service Area: Clinton, Ingham, Eaton

————————

Grand Rapids Opportunities for Women (GROW)
25 Sheldon Blvd. SE Suite 210
Grand Rapids, MI 49503

Microlending: Bill Hahn
Microlending: Bonnie Nawara

Phone: 616-458-3404
Fax: 616-458-6557
Email:

Service Area: Ottawa, Allegan, Montcalm, Muskegon, Oceana, Barry, Kalamazoo, Newaygo

————————

Metro Community Development, Inc.
503 S. Saginaw St., STE 804
Flint, MI 48502

Microlending: Ravi Yalamanchi

Phone: 810-767-4622
Email:
Website: metro-community.org

Service Area: Oakland, Livingston, Lapeer, Genesee, Saint Clair, Shiawasse

————————

Northern Economic Initiative Corp.
P.O. Box 7009
Marquette, MI 49855

Executive Director: Dennis West
Microlending: Barbara Krause

Phone: 906-226-1622
Fax: 906-228-5572
Email:
Website: www.niupnorth.org

Service Area: Newaygo, Montmorency, Osceola, Presque Isle, Alger, Baraga, Chippewa, Delta, Dickinson, Gogebic, Houghton, Iron, Keweenaw, Luce, Mackinac, Marquette, Menominee, Ontonagon, Schoolcraft, Alcona, Alpena, Arenac, Cheboygan, Clare, Emmet, Gladwin, Iosco, Isabella, Lake, Ogemaw, Mason, Oceana

————————

Renaissance Development Fund
38 West Wall Street
P O Box 428
Benton Harbor, MI 49023-0428

Executive Director: Gregory Vaughn
Microlending: Gregory Vaughn

Phone: 269-925-6100
Fax: 269-925-4471
Email:
Website: cstonealliance.org

Service Area: Van Buren, Cass, Berrien

OHIO

Economic and Community Development Institute
1655 Old Leonard Avenue
Columbus, OH 43219

Executive Director: Inna Kinney
Microlending: Inna Kinney
Microlending: Kathy Brown
Microlending: Peter Dunleavy

Phone: 614-559-0159
Fax: 614-732-0986
Email:
Email:

Service Area: Mahoning, Butler, Clark, Clinton, Darke, Fayette, Greene, Miami, Montgomery, Preble, Warren, Champaign, Allen, Ashland, Auglaize, Delaware, Fairfield, Franklin, Hamilton, Hardin, Knox, Licking, Logan, Madison, Marion, Mercer, Morrow, Paulding, Pickaway, Richland, Union, Van Wert, Cuyahoga, Erie, Geauga, Henry, Huron, Lake, Lorain, Lucas, Medina, Ottawa, Sandusky, Summit, Wayne, Williams, Wood, Harrison, Ashtabula, Carroll, Columbiana, Defiance, Fulton, Jefferson, Portage, Seneca, Stark, Trumbull, Tuscarawas, Adams, Athens, Belmont, Brown, Clermont, Coshocton, Crawford, Gallia, Guernsey, Hancock, Highland, Hocking, Holmes, Jackson, Lawrence, Meigs, Monroe, Morgan, Muskingum, Noble, Perry, Pike, Putnam, Ross, Scioto, Shelby, Vinton, Washington, Wyandot

————————

Kent Regional Business Alliance
aka Regional Economic Growth Corporation

211 East Summit Street
Kent, OH 44240

Executive Director: Jack Crews
Microlending: Betty Sweda
Microlending: Jack Crews

Phone: 330-474-3599
Fax: 330-677-2130
Email:

Service Area: Harrison, Ashtabula, Carroll, Columbiana, Coshocton, Tuscarawas, Holmes, Portage, Stark, Trumbull, Geauga


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FRANCHISING

Veteran Business Services

Where Veterans come to make their franchise
and small business ideas a reality!

Veteran Business Servicesw Logo

READ MORE:

Veterans across the country are selecting franchise opportunities in multiple industries. VBS supports Veterans by providing information about the best incentives in the franchise marketplace.

Franchise organizations within our directory provide Veterans with discounts on franchise fees, reduced royalties and special financing options. Keep up with the newest franchise incentives on the VBS website and find out more about franchise opportunities.

Finding the right franchise requires research. Click on any of the logos below to go specifically to the franchise advertisement on VBS and take a look at our complete franchise directory at:

FRANCHAISE DIRECTORY


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GLOSSARIES

Startup and Venture Capital Terms

TechRepublic

The startup world operates on a lot of lingo. This guide will give you a better context to understand the language of startups, venture capitalists, angel investors, and incubators.

READ MORE ABOUT TERMS TO KNOW


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LAW

ASK THE LAWYER

Before You Launch

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Veterans who are considering starting a business have a multitude of items on their checklist.

C Corp or Limited Liability Company? What about a succession plan? Tax implications?

Aside from those technical issues, veterans should become aware of what assistance and services are available. VetBizCentral, for example, offers a variety of programs for start-ups and others, such as Syracuse University, provide assistance for service disabled veterans and other veterans.

Sometime, one needs to look close to home to find some answers to the host of issues involved in starting a business.

The Pure Michigan Business Connect program is designed to link aspiring entrepreneurs, including veterans, with resources. Accounting as well as law firms have stepped up to donate services, at no charge. The concept is for existing businesses to donate their services to start-ups and thus enhance our state’s economy.

Jeremy M. Johnson is a Navy veteran and client relations director for the law firm of Plachta Murhpy & Associates in Grand Rapids. That firm is participating in the Pure Michigan Business Connect program and is reaching out to veterans in Western Michigan and beyond.

The firm conducts several presentations on start-up issues each year and partners with the Michigan Small Business Technology Development Centers and SCORE.

”There are no partners that are veterans, but there are several veterans on staff.

Starting a business is a complicated undertaking, and you need all the help you can get to make sure you are doing it right,” Johnson said. He cited several examples of issues entrepreneurs face when launching an enterprise.

AMONG THEM:

Entity Selection. Talk to an attorney about entity choice, i.e., corporations versus limited liability companies. Using the correct form of business entity can save you costs and complexity in the future.

Ownership Structure. Talk to an attorney about ownership structure if there are multiple owners. If you are a minority member (less than 51% ownership interest) you will want to make sure you have written limits on the authority of the majority owners so that you don’t get thrown under the bus if problems arise with the business.

Name Protection. Have an attorney help select a name that does not violate trademarks. Using a properly researched legal name and protecting the business name will avoid costly trademark claims and disputes down the road.

Lease or Real Estate Purchase Agreements. Have an attorney review the lease or real estate purchase agreement. If the business is going to rent or own real estate, you need to make sure the lease or purchase agreements do not put unnecessary legal burdens on you individually.

What-If Agreements. If you have a business partner or partners, have an attorney draft a buy/sell agreement. Establishing a legal agreement between the business owners up front about what happens if a business owner dies, becomes disabled or retires will avoid the cost and expense of litigation in the future if the business owners have conflicts or want out of the business.

For more information please contact:
E-Mail: Jeremy Johnson
CALL: (616) 458-3994
WEBSITE

Link to Facebook

Edward L. Ronders


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MARKETING

Creative Summer Marketing Ideas

American Small Business

Small Business Administration Logo

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Summer is here and it’s time to take to the streets. In the summer, your customers feel festive and spend more time outdoors. So, it’s the perfect time to get outside and get creative with your marketing efforts. Here are some ideas to try.

READ MORE ABOUT MARKETING


Top 10 of All Time

Marketing Books

Inc. Logo

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Essential books for entrepreneurs who really want to understand how and why their customers buy.

READ MARKETING BOOKS ARTICLE


List Your Business on VAMBOA
And Much More

Veteran And Military
Business Owners Association

VAMBOA Logo

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VAMBOA is a non-profit veteran business trade association that promotes and assists Veteran Business Owners, Service Disabled Veteran Owned Businesses (SDVOB) and Military Business Owners. We know that you possess special skills including leadership abilities and a work ethic second to none. Veteran Business Owners, Service Disabled Veteran Owned Businesses (SDVOB) and Military Business Owners are highly qualified to build successful businesses. Small businesses are the backbone of our economy and responsible for job generation.

Membership in VAMBOA is free and provides a multitude of resources.
JOIN HERE


PROCUREMENT

Veteran Institute for Procurement
Boots to Business: Federal Procurement

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) will provide support to the Montgomery County Chamber Community Foundation (MCCCF) to provide technical training to veteran-owned businesses seeking federal procurement opportunities. Through a Cooperative Agreement with SBA, the Foundation’s National Center for Veteran Institute for Procurement (VIP) will expand and host three training sessions a year (over a twelve month period) to support up to 150 service-disabled veteran-owned small business (SDVOSB) and veteran-owned small businesses (VOSB) to attend the program.

READ NEWS RELEASE

APPLY ON-LINE


The “Contract Capture Process”
(HOW TO WIN A LARGE NAVY CONTRACT)

The information provided in this document is provided as information only and does not reflect the official position of the Department of the Navy. The reader should refer to the specific regulations governing acquisitions for detailed information.

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VA Procurement

(e-Invoicing)
Courtesy of James Phillips

Veterans Administration Seal

President Obama signed the Improper Payment Elimination and Recovery Act of 2010 (IPERA) with the goal of reducing the federal government’s improper payments. Electronic invoicing is the leading technological solution to prevent improper payments by eliminating error –prone manual processing.

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To comply with IPERA, VA has finalized actions to mandate electronic invoice submission to the VA Financial Services Center (VAFSC). A Federal Register rule mandating electronic invoice submission was published November 27th, 2012. The mandate requiring contractors to submit payment requests in electronic form is effective December 27th, 2012.

PDF Vet Advantage Fact Sheet DOWNLOAD INVOICING MANDATE

PowerPoint Icon DOWNLOAD VENDOR INVOICING PROCESS


VA Proposals

(Small Business Tool Kit)
Courtesy of James Phillips

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It's a Matter of Trust

"Your response to my solicitation must convince me that YOU understand my requirement; so that in selecting you, I will get the job done successfully, not regret my decision in selecting you, and consider you for future opportunities." Jim Phillips

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The Tool Kit is based on common and frequent challenges encountered when determining if you should bid or not bid a project and when preparing a competitive proposal. The Tool Kit is not the only published work on the market devoted to this subject. Where the Tool Kit is the most beneficial to you is the practical knowledge which you learn through exercises and interaction with the materials.

PDF Icon DOWNLOAD Jim Phillips FREE Book
"Understanding Solicitations & Preparing Proposals"


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TAX


Cash vs Accrual Accounting

for Taxable Income and Expenses

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Are you starting a small business and trying to set up an accounting and bookkeeping method?

Are you filing your taxes and are confused about how to record your business income and expenses?

If you answer yes to either of the questions above, read on to learn when cash vs accrual accounting method can work better for your small business.

READ MORE ABOUT CASH vs ACCRUAL


12 TAX TIPS

For Small Business

Sales tax calculation and corresponding laws are constantly changing!

Staying up-to-date and knowing what you can do to be prepared for an audit is why our tax experts compiled this list of 12 Sales Tax Tips for Small Business.

Download this white paper and learn what your business can do to automate tax processes, stay on top of use taxes, e-commerce legislation, and streamline remittance procedures.

DOWNLOAD TAX TIPS WHITEPAPER


TIPS

Failing Startup Checklist:
4 Signs It's Time
To Pull The Plug

Conner Forrest
TechRepublic.com

Mar. 24, 2014 – Facing failure as an entrepreneur can be devastating. Here are four factors that can help you figure out if you should close the casket on your startup.

READ THE REST AT TECHREPUBLIC.COM


10 Extreme Bootstrapping Ideas

Cost Saving Tips

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Putting every dollar you make back into your company, and not your pocket, can be brutal. These cost-saving tips can help.

READ BOOTSTRAPPING ARTICLE


8 Words to Avoid

When Selling

Geoffrey James
SALES SOURCE

Over the two years, I've read hundreds of sales messages and heard dozens of sales presentations.

Probably 90 percent of them are full of words that are both trite and ineffective.

Here are the worst offenders:

1. “Exciting”

There is no word more boring than the word "exciting." Claiming that something is "exciting" tells everybody that it's not. Instead, find something about your offering that actually excites the customer's interest.

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4 Ways to Make

Smarter Decisions

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Assumptions and biases get in the way of making better business decisions. Learn to root them out with these tips.

READ SMARTER DECISIONS ARTICLE


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WEBINARS

NaVOBA
Veteran Owned Business Magazine

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NaVOBA WEBINAR INDEX


NEW CLIENT
REQUEST FOR COUNSELING

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The U.S. Small Business Administration requires all clients to complete the Request for Counseling (Form 641). This form will act as our Confidentiality and Code of Conduct Agreements. All client information is held in strictest of confidence.

To start the process, please click on the above e-CENTER button to access our electronic Request for Counseling form. After submission, a counselor will contact you shortly.

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VETBIZCENTRAL
WEBINARS

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Frequently Asked Questions
Starting a Business

09 May 2017
11:00 AM EDT

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Farmer Veteran Coalition
June 20 2017
1:00 PM EDT

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How Do I Do Business With Western Michigan University?
20 July 2017
1:00 PM EDT

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WEBINAR ARCHIVE

VISIT ARCHIVE


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2016 VET
CONFERENCE
PHOTOS

2011 VET Conference Attendees

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CVE
Verification Process Training Opportunities
PLEASE NOTE: CVE will be off-line 11-22 August 2016


Preparing For Re-Evaluation

1st Tuesday of Each Month

Preparing for Re-Verification Webinar & Town Hall

Designed for firms whose verification will be expiring


Verification Training

3rd Tuesday of Each Month

Pre-Application Webinar & Town Hall

Designed for firms interested in submitting their first CVE Verification application


Staying Verified

4th Tuesday of Each Month

How to stay Verified Webinar & Town Hall

Designed for firms who have been verified in six months


QUESTIONS


CVE
Center For Verification

Apply here for VOSB or SDVOSB status with the VA

APPLY HERE


CVE Business Locator

SEARCH HERE


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A Nonprofit assisting veterans since 2005, serving Michigan, Ohio and Indiana