- Posted by Ashley Panter
- On June 25, 2018
One of the first executive decisions you’ll make with a company is deciding exactly what type of business organization is the best suited for your needs. You may want to be a Limited Liability Company, a Partnership, or even a Corporation. Choosing the right business entity allows an entrepreneur to reduce liability exposure, minimize taxes, and ensure that the business can be financed and run efficiently. One of the biggest reasons business owners will need a license or permit is so the government can track revenue. However, licenses and permits are also used to protect the business and public.
There are major advantages and disadvantages for each business entity and the different licenses required. The UGA Small Business Development Centers can help you identify and find the best way to reach your goals.
Cost: FREE | Level: Intermediate
Cost: FREE | Level: Intermediate
Cost: $69 | Level: Beginner
"The SBDC is just a great resource for anyone starting out or still doing business. I’ve always recommended it to colleagues and patients. It’s been instrumental in terms of our growth."
"When you are a business owner, you have considerations from legal to personnel to accounting, business affairs and procurement. Any person running a company needs to understand a profit and loss statement and best practices. These are not things that all small businesses know.”
“I don’t like asking for help from anyone. I’ve always thought my ideas were the best. In working with [UGA SBDC consultant] Laura and the SBDC, however, I came to the realization that I needed support and guidance. You can get that with the SBDC.”
“Whenever I need something, I have access to a wealth of information and knowledge at the SBDC. When I want to use their resources or even just ask questions, I go to them. And when I talk to anyone interested in opening a small business, I tell them the first thing they need to do is go to the SBDC.”
"[UGA SBDC consultant] Darrel taught me that I needed to pay more attention to our financials. Our work with the SBDC revealed that I really needed to sharpen my skills in that area of the business.”“I really look back over the last three years since our relationship began and I can now see that that relationship has served as a touchstone for most of our growth.”
“We are incredibly thankful for our connection to the SBDC. [UGA SBDC consultant] Benny always treated us as professionals, and the learning opportunities at the SBDC are very rich with seminars and networking opportunities. It has proven to be an invaluable experience.”
“In college I felt I was getting taught to work for someone else, while the SBDC was showing me how to develop my own business. That’s pretty awesome.”
“The SBDC has given me great insight on creating this business, how to prepare for a major loan and how to grow. They played an important role assisting me in focusing more on what I needed to do and how to figure out what would be most profitable.”
“Our consultant was helpful in reviewing the agreement and talking about cash flow. He presented us with information on SBA loan products. We did the paperwork for an SBA express loan for working capital, submitted it the day after we signed the purchase agreement and were able to get funding within 30 days.”
“I’ve built a very close relationship with the SBDC as we’ve continued working over the years in different areas of business growth and development. The SBDC is the place to go.”
“The SBDC offers the right environment to talk about goals and how we want to look in the next three-to-five years. They’ve helped us take a step back and really think about our growth. They helped us make sure to get results.”
"Before the SBDC, we learned largely by trial and error, and we had a few of those errors along the way,” she says. “Fortunately, we have [UGA SBDC consultants] Jeff and Erica to lean on. We can ask, do you think we’re doing the right thing? They understand what I’m saying and make concise suggestions on how to approach it. They really, legitimately want to help.”
“We have tripled our growth and the SBDC has given us the resources and tools to grow. My business wouldn’t have been able to reach these milestones without the SBDC.”
"Without them, we wouldn’t have Fetch. I wish more people knew about the SBDC rather than pay thousands of dollars for someone to help them. They’re more than willing to help you."
“It’s good to have a person like David [Lewis] who can advise us. Whenever we get a new idea for our business, we sit down and review different scenarios. He knows what works and what doesn’t work, and our results have been very positive.”
“Many people start out thinking ‘I’ve got a great business idea! I know how to bake a cake or create a website.’ But it’s not just that. How will you pay people? How do you manage your financing and relationships? How do you get people to find your website? That’s where the SBDC comes into play. They have a lot of experience. They’re like a coach in your corner."
“I found out about the SBDC after I went to a couple of different banks. They said ‘your numbers look good, but they could look a lot better, so go talk to these guys.’ I did and came back with the complete package."
“I had no small business experience before. I am a speech pathologist and my husband is a marine engineer. We took the SBDC’s GrowSmart program, then started going to the SBDC’s free business consultations, and it was awesome. It still is!”
“I thought I was doing great, having written a four-page business plan. But it was a joke. After [SBDC consultant] Carol [McDonell] finished advising me, I ended up with a 45-page plan.”
“People don’t understand how large this industry is. It will continue to grow as parking density and security needs increase. We expect the SBDC will continue to help us manage this dynamic change. They’ll help us focus on specific opportunities and maximize our presence in the marketplace.”
“The SBDC’s exprienced, knowledeable team can talk the nitty-gritty of commercialization. They helped carry IS3D from idea to a produt for the marketplace.”
“Janelle and I are both in our 20s and have had to learn a lot of lessons the hard way, which is expensive,” he continues. “The SBDC can help you refine your vi- sion and work to make it happen.”
“Jeff [Sanford] provided an educational experience I will carry with me for years to come. If it had not been for his efforts in the classroom and the field, I would not be where I am today.”
“David [Dunn] is great,” says Hardy. I’ve already recommended him to several entrepreneurs, and he’s helped put together several of their plans. Everyone in that office is real helpful. And every time I’ve had a ground breaking or ribbon cutting, they come celebrate with us.”
“For me, it was not only beneficial, but vital to develop this relationship with Erica [Bracey] and the SBDC. I won’t go through this process again without her help in making sure I have everything in line.”
“I was not originally approved on the financial data I had. The industry was unheard of and lenders said it wouldn’t work,” says Lebedin. “Darrel [Hulsey] developed the financial models and spreadsheets that banks were used to looking at. I fed him the information he needed, he entered it into his model, and we eventually found a bank that could provide us financial assistance.”
“I will keep going back to Mark [Lupo] and the SBDC. The things he and the SBDC do help me dig deep roots. They’ve been really good to me.”
“We knew all we needed to know as domestic distributors, but we had no direct knowledge of the foreign customer,” says Nut Tree Pecan’s Francis “Putt” Wetherbee, who attended the Georgia SBDC’s ExportGA class and found “it was a great experience.”
The SBDC helped me strengthen the business plan and put together the loan packet for the construction of our 9,500 square foot building designed just for children. We received an SBA loan and moved there in June of 2008.
We believe in relationship building and smooth, steady progress,” says Hester. “From the moment we met Bob and Sharon, we were very impressed. They share our values, and the things we believe about business just lined up perfectly.