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SBDC assists start-up ventures and existing businesses

The Illinois SBDC for the Metro East assists start-up ventures as well as existing businesses headquartered in the nine-county region of Calhoun, Jersey, Madison, Bond, Clinton, St. Clair, Washington, Monroe and Randolph. It is funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration, Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, and SIUE as a service to Illinois small businesses.

By assisting entrepreneurs and companies in defining their path to success, the SBDC network positively impacts the Metro East Illinois region by strengthening the business community, creating and retaining new jobs, and encouraging new investment. The SBDC enhances Metro East Illinois’s economic interests providing one-stop assistance to individuals by means of advising, research, and advocacy for new ventures and existing small businesses. When appropriate, the SBDC strives to affiliate its ties to the Southwestern Illinois Region to support the goals and objectives of both the SIUE School of Business and the University at large.


Our Services

No matter what stage you are at in starting your business, the SBDC can guide you through the stages of business planning. The SBDC has the business knowledge you need to build on your effort and entrepreneur ideas. Our services are free of charge to for-profit businesses and include:

  • One-on-one advising
  • Business plan assistance
  • Marketing strategy assistance
  • Financing and loan information
  • Business Registration Process
  • Starting Your Business in Illinois Handbook



The SBDC provides confidential, no-cost advising services to entrepreneurs and existing business owners. Conducted by trained counselors, these sessions may include discussion and review of business plans, financing options, government assistance programs, marketing, management and other topics of concern to our clients.

Referral Partners

For clients that require specialized services, the SBDC provides referrals to a variety of business professionals and consultants. Many provide free or low-cost initial consultation meetings.


SBDC clients may visit our business resource library containing reference material on a variety of business-related topics. There is no cost to use the resource center.

The SBDC maintains a database of accountants, attorneys, banks, and other business service providers who are particularly attuned to small-business needs. As the business services arm of the U.S. Small Business Administration and the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, the SBDC answers your questions concerning federal and state financing programs, bank lending practices, equity investment, and other capitalization options.

Workshops and Seminars

The SBDC conducts seminars and workshops annually on topics important to successful businesses. Approximately half our offerings are directed toward individuals with a new business concept or early stage start-up. The instructors are experienced small-business owners and professional service providers, ensuring that the information provided is timely, relevant, and immediately applicable in a real-world environment.


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