Do I qualify for West Virginia Small Business Development Center (WV SBDC) services?

The WV SBDC serves businesses with fewer than 500 employees, including new ventures, startup businesses, and growing companies. Primarily, we are a valuable resource to existing businesses that need assistance to become more innovative and competitive, but we also provide resources and tools for the budding entrepreneur and business startup.

What type of assistance does the WV SBDC provide?

The WV SBDC offers free, one-on-one business coaching services to enable business owners to grow their companies, solve complex problems, improve management skills, develop new ideas and explore new business opportunities. The WV SBDC is ready to assist your business in every stage of the business lifecycle.   Our experienced business coaches can help you understand the requirements for going into business, assist with business planning, determine your financial needs and potential sources of financing, and more. Don’t hesitate to reach out today at askme@wv.gov or 888-WVA-SBDC to connect with a business coach near you.

If my business is a non-profit can the WV SBDC help me?

While the core purpose of the SBDC is to provide aid to small businesses, we may under certain circumstances assist non-profits if a significant portion of their activities are focused on small business concerns.  

Does the WV SBDC provide financing?

The WV SBDC does not provide financing directly to small businesses. We can help you identify financing opportunities and advise you on how to improve your loan application by assisting with your business plan and financial projections.


West Virginia University’s “West Virginia Forward” program offers a guide to help navigate funding options for your business here.

Does the WV SBDC charge for business coaching and trainings? 

The services of the WV SBDC are provided at no cost thanks to the support of the U.S. Small Business Administration and our partners, host institutions and other in-kind contributions. Nominal fees are often charged for training workshops. 

How can I get assistance from the WV SBDC?

There are several ways to get assistance from the WV SBDC.

1. Contact the Business Ask Me Line at askme@wv.gov or 888-WVA-SBDC. A business navigator can assist the entrepreneur or small business owner with questions and will provide referrals to various state and federal programs. They can also assist with connecting the business owner to trainings and business coaching. 

2. Participate in one of our training events. The WV SBDC offers a variety of trainings instructed by our business coaches, partners and subject matter experts offered in person or online. Our content ranges from introductory to advanced topics to help you gain small business management skills.  To view all WV SBDC trainings, view our training calendar.

3. Connect with a Business Coach. The WV SBDC provides support to West Virginia’s small businesses through one-on-one coaching, training and facilitating connections to resources. The WV SBDC will work with you on specific issues to help you build your business, technical skills and knowledge. Connect with a business coach today by requesting service through our website at wvsbdc.com or connect with a Business Navigator at 888-WVA-SBDC or askme@wv.gov. If you have never owned a business before or have had a business for one year or less, the WV SBDC recommends that you register for our Business Fundamentals workshop. This workshop will walk you through all the necessary steps to get your business started.

Explore the following topics in Business Fundamentals in person or online:

  • Business Plan      
  • Startup Costs     
  • Business Registration  
  • Market Demand & Competition 
  • Funding Your Business        
  • The 5 C’s of Credit    
  • Credit Score       
  • Loan Applications    
Can the WV SBDC recommend a business for me to start?

Our experience shows that successful entrepreneurs usually have a solid understanding of their new ventures and the type of business they want to start. This means that they or members of their management team have operated a similar business before, or that they have unique skills and contacts that enable success.

Rather than suggest a business for you, we encourage you to evaluate your experiences, unique skills and strengths and start on a business plan that makes sense to you. Our business coaches are committed to helping you along the way.

What can I expect from a meeting with a business coach?

Learn more about what to expect during your engagement with the SBDC by reading our What to Expect document.

Is there a limit on how many times I can see a business coach?   

There is not a limit on how many appointments you can have with a business coach. However, if you find that you have all the information that you need after one meeting, that’s okay, too.     

Who funds the WV SBDC?

All SBDCs are supported, in part, through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and is hosted by the West Virginia Development Office.