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Business Ownership Initiative of Indiana (BOI)

The Business Ownership Initiative of Indiana (BOI) provides FREE Business Counselors to help you start or grow your business. Get the advice you need to: find out about loan programs; set goals for your business; write or evaluate your business plan; grow sales from new and existing customers; stay on top of cash flow; and more! To schedule an appointment, contact BOI via phone at (317) 917-3266 ext. 100 or email.

Business Resources

Click on any of the topics below to get more detail about business resources available to NAWBO-Indianapolis members.

Indiana Business Council

Formed to gather insights and opinions of executives and employees of Indiana businesses, the Indiana Business Council is an online panel consisting of more than 4,000 men and women in companies of all sizes and industries in the state. Council members are invited to provide their feedback on a variety of business topics facing every Indiana organization.

Council feedback is studied, analyzed, interpreted, and published by Walker and Inside INdiana Business to help organizations better understand and navigate today’s business environment. You can learn more about it at www.indianabusinesscouncil.com.

M/W/VBE Resource Portal

The City of Indianapolis and its Department of Minority & Women Business Development (DMWBD) has a free online portal to help build business opportunities for City-certified minority, women, and veteran business owners through an agreement with local firm Innoventum.

A DMWBD needs assessment revealed many vendors lacked business administration and development education. The new Innoventum portal will provide the type of resources and tools for these vendors to hone and enhance their skills. Utilizing the portal will provide quick and easy access for vendors to the necessary resources and tools for continued business development.

Maximize the Benefits of your Certification

Are you a State of Indiana Certified M/WBE? If so, would you like help finding contracting opportunities or information about the process of doing business with the State? If so, contact the State of Indiana Minority and Women’s Business Enterprises Division, Business Development Group (BDG).

The BDG offers one-on-one consulting services to Indiana certified firms. These consultations include but are not limited to tips on maneuvering through the state website, advice on finding contracting opportunities, tips on how to grow your business and assistance with other resources to help position your business for success.

You can reach the BDG via phone at (317) 234-3061 or via email at mwbe@idoa.in.gov.

Does your Business Qualify for DBE Certification?

On February 17, 2009, President Barack Obama signed into law the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). As a result, the State of Indiana will receive $658 million in federal highway funds.

Because this is federal money, federal law requires INDOT and Local Governments to set contract goals for Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) participation. If you are a minority or woman owned company that is not certified as a DBE in the State of Indiana, and you provide services relevant to highway construction projects, you may qualify for DBE certification.

To qualify for certification as a DBE, your firm must meet the eligibility standards established in federal regulations 49 CFR Part 26, summarized below.

The owner of a for-profit firm must be a socially and economically disadvantaged individual who is a citizen of the United States or lawfully admitted permanent resident. The following classes are presumed to be socially and economically disadvantaged under the federal regulations:

  • Female
  • Black
  • Hispanic
  • Asian Pacific
  • Asian India
  • Native American

While these groups have a presumption of social disadvantage, any individual who can establish social and economic disadvantage by a preponderance of the evidence, based on guidelines set forth in Appendix E to 49 CFR Part 26, may qualify.

The socially and economically disadvantaged owner must:

  • Own at least 51% of the firm.
  • Have an individual personal net worth, excluding the value of the disadvantaged owner’s primary residence and ownership interest in the firm, of less than $750,000.
  • Have contributed capital to acquire ownership that is “real and substantial”and derived from independently owned resources.
  • Must “control” the day-to-day activities of the firm, meaning that he or she must have expertise, operational and managerial control, and independence from non-DBE firms.

A DBE firm must be a small business. This means that a firm applying for DBE status may not have gross receipts, averaged over a three-year period, that exceed the Small Business Administration size standards associated with the specific type of firm. See 13 CFR Part 121. In no case, may a DBE firm’s gross receipts averaged over a three-year period exceed $20.4 million.

If you believe your firm qualifies for DBE certification, log on to the INDOT DBE website for information and an application.

For those of you that are currently DBE certified and perform highway construction work, get prepared:

  • Review your contact information in the INDOT repository to ensure it is up-to-date and accurate.
  • Sign up on the “Contract Notification List” and checkout the “Doing Business with INDOT, Contractors” for upcoming contract letting information. There is a wealth of information on this page with links to all the information you will need to submit bids to prime contractors.
  • Be aware that INDOT is posting all ARRA information on the Internet.
  • Market yourself and step-up networking efforts with prime contractors. Let them know that you are aware of this increase in construction projects and would like to be included in their bidding plans.

NAWBO Resource Center

NAWBO has the resources you need to achieve smart growth at its Resource Center on the national website. These resources will help you learn how to find everything from new sources of capital to tips on how to begin government contracting. There also is helpful information on how to expand your business internationally, business certification agencies, and government agencies and resources—all to help you thrive.

Business Resources

Information on the following topics is available at NAWBO national’s Resource Center under Business Resources:

  • Access to Capital
  • Going Global
  • Government Contracting
  • PR Newswire for NAWBO
  • Wells Fargo Online Library
  • NAWBO’s Online Mentoring Platform—MentorCloud
  • Business Publications
  • Business Certification

Articles Library

In addition, the NAWBO Articles Library consists of business content articles and best practices that can help you grow your business. Information on the following topics are available:

  • Entrepreneurship & History
  • Finance & Access to Capital
  • Global Entrepreneurship
  • Government Contracting Articles
  • Human Resources & Compensation
  • Impact of Women in the Economy
  • Leadership & Management
  • Marketing & Brand Management
  • Non-profit & Social Entrepreneurship
  • Operations & Customer Service
  • Organization & Strategy
  • Technology & Innovation
  • Buying a Franchise