The federal Small Business Administration (SBA) has recently launched a new business course designed to aid Native American small-business owners in getting started in the business world and in becoming informed of the programs and services offered by the U.S. government to assist in the success of American small businesses. The course, entitled Native American Small Business Primer: Strategies for Success, is a free, online course developed to work at an individual’s own pace.
The emphasis of the new course is on business planning and market research and how to use these tools to become informed of the essential legal and logistical aspects of launching into the realm of small business ownership. Presented information includes a description of the varying types of ownership and business licensing, a discussion on obtaining seed money for business startup, and the basics of borrowing money. Also addressed are methods to estimate start-up costs and the continuing financial needs inherent in the process of going into business.
Native Americans completing the training course receive a certificate of completion. The Office of Native American Affairs, whose purview extends to American Indians, Alaskan and Hawaiian Natives, works to ensure these groups have access to governmental programs and services. Nearly 250,000 Native American-owned businesses account for billions of dollars added to the American economy each year. Addressing the upstart online program, SBA Administrator Karen Mills said, “Our ultimate goal is to help create jobs and stimulate economic and business development in our Native American communities. This course is an essential business development tool for the entrepreneur’s toolbox.”