Resources for Businesses in South Florida

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Running a business is difficult.

There are legal pitfalls, financing issues, and administrative costs to finding information, resources, and contacts.There are high risks in entrepreneurship and help is usually limited to stakeholders in your company.

However, entrepreneurial activity is a defining feature of a thriving economy and a major determinant of job creation, GDP growth, and economic development. By virtue of shared interests, governments therefore have a vested interest in helping businesses succeed.

The following government organizations offer free services, potential funding, and assistance for businesses operating in South Florida.

Small Business Association

History & Mission:

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. The SBA helps Americans start, build and grow businesses.


Miami District Office

51 SW 1st Avenue, Suite 201

Miami,  FL 33130

Phone: 305-536-5521

What It Offers:

The Miami SBA’s District Office is responsible for the delivery of SBA's many programs and services throughout South Florida. Services available include:

  • Free counseling, advice and information on starting a business through SCORE.

  • Financial assistance for new or existing businesses through guaranteed loans made by area bank and non-bank lenders.

  • Free consulting services through the Florida Small Business Development Center network. SBDCs also conduct training events throughout the district.

  • 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.

  • Guaranteed loans are available for credit-worthy veterans.

Bottom Line:

The SBA educates and finances. If you are an entrepreneur, or already operate a small business, the SBA works to help you not only start, but also sustain and develop a business by providing educational and monetary resources.

Resources: for the National SBA

SBA Miami-Homepage for the Miami District SBA

Miami Dade Business Resources-Contact information for SBDCs, SCORE, and SBA-related organizations and programs.

NAV Article-Article clarifying the difference between SBA, SCORE, and SBDCs.

Enterprise Florida

History & Mission:

Enterprise Florida, Inc. (EFI) is a public-private partnership between Florida’s business and government leaders and is the principal economic development organization for Florida. EFI’s mission is to expand and diversify the state’s economy through job creation. In pursuit of its mission, EFI works closely with a statewide network of economic development partners and is funded both by the State of Florida and by private-sector businesses.

Enterprise Florida recruits new businesses to the state, and works to retain and expand existing industry and business. EFI is the state’s primary entity for trade and export development supporting more than 60,000 Florida exporting businesses. The organization also supports small and minority businesses through its capital programs.


Miami-Dade (International Trade & Development Office)

201 Alhambra Circle, Suite 610

Coral Gables,  FL 33134

Phone: 305-808-3660

What It Offers:

Enterprise Florida is responsible for assisting companies with their location, relocation and expansion plans, assisting Florida businesses in expanding into the international marketplace, and improving the economic, business and regulatory climate in Florida for minority, small business and entrepreneurial firms. Services available include...

Business Location, Relocation, and Expansion:

  • Building and sites database

  • Determining company’s eligibility for business incentive programs and assisting with applications

  • Coordinating financing programs and assistance

Expansion into the International Marketplace:

  • Offering export counseling and advice

  • Organizing and executing overseas trade missions and shows

  • Offering financial assistance for export transactions to small- and medium-sized Florida companies

Minority and Small Business Support:

  • Assisting with access to University Technology Transfer Offices, Incubators, and Accelerators

  • Providing information and direction to business owners seeking financing

  • Facilitating access to Small Business Administration export finance services to SME export clients

Bottom Line:

Enterprise Florida provides information and assists in executing business plans. If you are a business seeking to expand to Florida or expand internationally, Enterprise Florida will help you find resources and will help expedite the operation.

Resources: Homepage. of services and resources offered.

Beacon Council

History & Mission:

The Miami-Dade Beacon Council, a public-private partnership, is the official economic development organization for Miami-Dade County.  Lead by a professional staff and Board of volunteer community leaders, the organization facilitates business growth and expansion locally, nationally and internationally. The Council was founded in 1985 as an outgrowth of the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce to focus on business recruitment, expansion and retention.

The Beacon Council aims to increase jobs and investment in Miami-Dade by marketing Miami-Dade as a world-class business location, growing local companies and fostering entrepreneurs, and by shaping Miami-Dade’s economic future. The strategic plan and foundation for the Miami-Dade Beacon Council economic development mission is the One Community One Goal (OCOG) initiative of bringing a broad spectrum of Miami-Dade organizations together to advance the goal of a thriving, inclusive and diverse community.


Miami-Dade Beacon Council

80 SW 8th Street, Suite 2400

Miami,  FL 33130

Phone: 305-579-1300

What It Offers:

The Miami-Dade Beacon Council is responsible for connecting businesses, organizations, and institutions with the aim of creating public-private programs and partnerships that create jobs, boost the local economy, and attract investment. Services available include:

  • Connects different stakeholders within Miami-Dade through networking events.

  • Hosts the OCOG Annual Report to the Community event that connects educational institutions to businesses, businesses to investors, and brings the Miami business community under one roof to network.

  • Organizes new business showcases, economic panels and committees, and community networking events.

  • Researches and gathers data on economic growth, major industries, and shifts in business trends.

  • Provides information on business contacts and resources in Miami.

  • Fosters partnerships between businesses and anchor institutions to generate growth and sustainability.

Bottom Line:

The Beacon Council connects people. If you are an organization, business, or institution seeking connections with the intention of doing business, forming a partnership, or creating a program of economic benefit for yourself and the community then reach out to the Beacon Council.


Esteban GuioBusiness