Small Business

Helping small businesses grow and succeed.

Enterprise Florida, Inc.’s (EFI) Minority & Small Business, Entrepreneurship and Capital (MaSBEC) division partners with outside organizations to provide small, minority and entrepreneurial companies with training, development and financing options.  EFI has an extensive network of state, federal and non-profit resources ready to assist small businesses in accessing capital, entering new markets, and creating revenue growth and job creation.

Capital Programs

EFI facilitates the following capital programs that match qualifying small businesses with lenders that can provide financial assistance and lines of credit:

Small Business Loan Support Program

EFI’s State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI)  programs are designed to assist small businesses in obtaining loan approvals and leverage private capital for use in startup costs, working capital, business procurement, franchise fees, equipment, inventory, or the purchase of owner‐occupied commercial real estate. The program provides a lender with the necessary security, in the form of a partial guarantee, for the lender to approve a loan or line-of-credit.

Bond Financing

The EFI‐managed Florida Development Finance Corporation (FDFC) was created to be a conduit issuer (not direct issuer) of industrial revenue bonds (IRBs) for small manufacturers and 501(c)3 organizations. The advantage of IRBs is the potential to provide borrowers significant interest and state tax savings. IRB proceeds may be used for capital expenditures only, such as the purchase of land, new long‐term equipment, and building construction/renovations.

Venture Capital Program                                                          

The EFI‐sponsored Florida Opportunity Fund provides venture capital for start-up and early-stage businesses.  State Venture Capital Programs often take one of two forms: a state-run venture capital fund (which may include other private investors) that invests directly in businesses; or a fund of funds, which is a fund that invests in other venture capital funds that in turn invest in individual businesses. Many factors, particularly resources and available talent, inform a state’s decision on which form to choose.

Phase 0 Program

EFI’s SBIR/STTR Phase 0 Program helps Florida’s small businesses improve their chances of submitting a successful Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) or Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Phase 1 proposal for federal research and development funds.  Eligible expenses include market research, technology consulting services, grant writing assistance, related travel and legal/accounting fees.

Minority Business Development

EFI has endeavored to support existing minority development efforts by partnering with established outside organizations to provide small, minority and entrepreneurial companies with training, development and financing options.  EFI has an extensive network of state, federal and non-profit resources ready to assist small businesses in accessing capital, entering new markets, and creating revenue growth and job creation.  Specifically, a Group of 6 or “G6” partners have been vital to a successful outreach and communication in this area. Our G6 partners include:

Strategic Partnerships with Small Business Programs

In addition to our G6 partners, our staff works closely with or is pursuing other outreach partners throughout the state to support existing small and minority business development efforts.  The following is a list of our outreach partners:

Statistics about Florida’s small businesses are available in the SBA’s Small Business Profile: Florida

EFI’s International Trade Development Program for Small Business

EFI provides export counseling for small businesses looking to expand their product offerings to the international marketplace. For more information about how EFI can help, please visit our Export from Florida section.