Starting a Business

Starting a business in Washington State is one of life’s great adventures, building something from virtually nothing while making your idea a reality. To get you started on your journey, we’ve created a number of resources, programs and services to get you on your way.

Entrepreneur Academy

If you’re new to the idea of starting and running a business, the Entrepreneur Academy should be your first stop. Eleven experts will walk you through the various aspects of entrepreneurship that you will want to master, from business structure and marketing to supply chain and avoiding common mistakes.

Food Business Academy

If you have a passion for cooking or baking, this academy is for you. We walk you through all the options, from starting a Cottage Food operation in your own kitchen to expanding into food booth at a festival, food truck, pop-up or brick-and-mortar restaurant.

The Business Startup Playbook

The Playbook was written by a Washington business owner for entrepreneurs and business owners. It is filled with resources, links and the steps required to start and operate a business in the state, all in an easy-to-read, football-themed format.

Mastering Finances

For many small business owners, the daily grind of managing finances is fraught with mysteries, from managing tax liabilities and risk to finding ways to keep more money in your bank account and less heading out the door. In this masterclass, we’ll show you everything you need to know about managing your business and personal finances to create stability, sustainability and creditworthiness.

Web Academy

A well-conceived online presence is essential for most businesses, whether they are looking for new customers, markets or revenue streams. Building a website, engaging in social media or even adding e-commerce isn’t as difficult as it used to be. The Web Academy was created to provide you with everything you need to know to master the terms, steps and processes to build, manage and run a successful online marketing strategy, whether you do it yourself or hire an expert to do it for you.

Creatives Academy

The Creatives Academy teaches the principles and strategies creatives need to transform their passion to create into a sustainable, profitable business. The Academy covers a wide range of skills, from thinking like a business and managing cash flow to negotiating with clients and finding new markets, including the potential of exporting.


SizeUp offers a sophisticated set of online diagnostic tools that will help you refine your business model, identify competitors, find suppliers, develop advertising strategies and more. You can run various scenarios, comparing your business to others in the area to see how your pricing, staffing, revenue projections and marketing strategies stack up, complete with local, regional, state and U.S. data comparisons.

Work Spaces

An online, searchable map of work spaces, co-working spaces, maker spaces, incubators, accelerators and commercial kitchens where you can start your business.

Startup Wisdom: 27 Strategies for Raising Capital

Money makes the world go round and this free book has traditional and creative ways to secure financing, from crowdfunding to little known grant programs

Access to Capital

We’ve compiled a list of angel investors, venture capitalists and local investing organizations (LIONS) to help you find money to launch your new enterprise.

Entrepreneur Resources

We’ve scoured the Internet to find helpful articles, resources and how-tos on everything from mentorship and networking organizations to technical assistance.

Startup Centers

This section connects you to the many Startup Centers around the state that offer events, mentorship, training and more.

Global Entrepreneurship Week

Each November, our partners across the state hold workshops, seminars and competitions to expose residents to the idea of owning and running their own business. It’s a great way to find out what it takes to run a business and glean new ideas.

Property & Site Search

Does your new business need its own physical space from the get-go? Find a new building, office or buildable land using our property search feature and then use the filters to narrow and refine your search.