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MBSTL Business - Starting a Business Overview: Home

Useful Information for Starting a Business

The Maine Department of Economic and Community Development, through its Business Answers program, connects new and existing businesses with the various state departments and agencies responsible for specific licenses, permits, rules and regulations. While Business Answers does not advise on legal or financial matters.

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is the federal agency that aims to help small businesses succeed. It offers courses, workshops, publications, information and other programs designed to help start or expand your business. Maine District Office of the SBA can provide you more guidance in access to capital, counseling and government contracting.

The IRS’s Small Business and Self-Employed Tax Center provides tax compliance guidance.

The Maine Small Business Development Centers (Maine SBDC) should be a first stop on your journey to self-employment. This partnership program with the State of Maine, the SBA and the University of Southern Maine provides one-on-one counseling to existing and startup entrepreneurs on such topics as cash flow and marketing. They also offer an interactive on-line business start-up course.

SCORE is a network of entrepreneurs, business lenders and executives, who volunteer as mentors to the small business community providing assistance to help entrepreneurs start businesses, grow companies and create jobs in local communities. It offer workshops and mentor programs. SCORE Maine offers some local resources; SCORE Bangor, Augusta, Auburn, Ellsworth, Portland, and Oxford Hills offer local workshops and mentoring services.

The Women’s Business Development Center provides business training, coaching and mentoring and other assistance geared toward women. 

The Maine Small Business Advocate serves as an independent voice for Maine small businesses within the state’s regulatory system. The Advocate works directly with small businesses of 50 employees or fewer that have specific grievances with one or more regulatory agency’s enforcement actions. The Advocate’s top priority is to represent small businesses that face the challenging task of understanding and complying with Maine’s extensive and often complex regulatory requirements. 

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