Illinois Small Business Development Center at UIC

Since 2002, the Illinois SBDC at UIC has worked closely with students, faculty and the community to help emerging and established business owners start, grow, and build prosperous ventures. Over the past decade the Illinois SBDC at UIC has served over 2000 entrepreneurs who launched 200 new businesses, creating 2600 jobs and securing over $85 million in funding.

Last year, the Illinois SBDC at UIC helped clients secure over $2 million in loans and $3 million in equity investment. Five clients successfully registered  a patent, and two clients received over $200,000 in SBIR funds. 

The Illinois SBDC at UIC is funded and supported by the UIC College of Business Administration, Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies, and the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity.


The Illinois SBDC at UIC offers in-person workshops, on-line snapshotsshort courses, one-on-one mentoring, and referrals to expert resources  that can help business owners better understand and access help with market analysis, business planning, debt financing, equity investment (friends&family, angel, VC), startup leadership and other important topics.

Among the programs offered are: Business Start and Business Growth.

Technology, Innovation and Entrepreneurship

Since 2011 the Illinois SBDC at UIC has operated a Technology, Innovation and Entrepreneurship Specialty or TIES initiative in order to provide small business consulting services to light-tech and high-tech based companies with high growth potential. Entrepreneurs in the technology industries can receive free assistance with all aspects of launching a new business or incorporating innovative technology into an existing business through the TIES program.

Through the sponsorship of the Small Business Administration (SBA), the Illinois SBDC at UIC has access to a very useful framework
GrowthWheel for Start-Ups and High-Growth Companies that entrepreneurs and their teams can use to better key steps in an action plan tailored to their specific situation.

Business Start

The Business Start program is a series of workshops for individuals interested in starting their own business. These workshops start with the assumption that you have a business idea that you would like to pursue, but may not know exactly how or where to start. The workshops - Venture StartVenture ViabilityVenture Launch and Venture Finance - start with a comprehensive overview of all you need to know to get started and then help you dive deeper into the specific skills and information you need to move ahead.

Business Growth

An entrepreneur in a growth business has an established enterprise with recurring sales and is facing a new opportunity or business transformation event. These entrepreneurs can find value in our special topics workshops.

Topics include:

-  Using Social Media to Generate Leads
-  Negotiate Before You Litigate
-  The Affordable Care Act and You
-  Crowd-funding - How to have a Successful Kickstarter Campaign