The Pennsylvania Commission for Women recognizes the important contributions of women in Pennsylvania’s workforce. Women-owned businesses across the state enhance local communities, create family sustaining jobs, foster creativity and innovation, and strengthen the state’s economy. In 2013, Pennsylvania was home to 295,200 women-owned businesses that employed an estimated 303,100 workers.¹
HOW TO START A BUSINESS IN PA
Pennsylvania offers a variety of resources, incentives and advice for start up businesses.
• PABizOnline.com - PABizOnline.com gives entrepreneurs one-stop access to business information. Entrepreneurs can find out how to start a business, learn how PA can help them grow, and electronically register a business with the Department of Labor and Industry, Department of Revenue, and Department of State.
• Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs) – The Small Business Development Centers support the economic development of entrepreneurs with individual consultation and the comprehensive education and information necessary to help businesses start, grow and prosper.
The Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) offers an array of funding programs, grants, loans, tax credits and other incentives to help Pennsylvania businesses.
The Entrepreneur's Guide
The Entrepreneur’s Guide is a “how-to” resource for anyone interested in starting and growing a business in Pennsylvania. The guide can be downloaded online and includes helpful information about writing a business plan, registering your business, estimate start up costs and more.
The Bureau of Small Business Opportunites (BSBO)
The Bureau of Small Business Opportunities is a Bureau (formerly the Bureau of Minority and Woman Business Opportunities) that assists small businesses, including women business enterprises, in competing for contracting opportunities in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA)
The U.S. Small Business Administration is an independent agency of the federal government designed to aid, counsel, assist and protect the interests of small businesses. Since 1953, the SBA has delivered millions of loans, counseling sessions and other forms of assistance to small businesses across the country.
Women's Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC)
The Women's Business Enterprise National Council is the largest third-party certifier of businesses owned, controlled, and operated by women in the United States. WBENC provides certification to women-owned businesses throughout the country and serves as a leading advocate of women-owned businesses as suppliers to America's corporations.
Small Business Champion Network (SBCN)
The Small Business Champion Network (SBCN) offers free, practical advice and assistance to individuals interested in starting a business, while helping existing companies grow and prosper.
¹The 2013 State of Women-Owned Business Report. American Express OPEN. Table 3: Trend in Growth of Women-Owned Firms By State, 1997-2013 (pg. 41)