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Business Development Center

Women's Business Center

History & Mission

Founded in 2004 as a partnership with the U.S. Small Business Administration, PACE’s Women’s Business Center is “the place” for LA’s women entrepreneurs.  We are situated downtown and offer a uniquely structured program that can be tailored to suit a wide variety of needs.  We pride ourselves on our commitment to giving each client the personal attention and encouragement that they deserve; and we believe that hard work and innovation can create economic opportunities that will improve the lives of those we serve.

Mission Statement:

“PACE WBC advances the economic wealth of women through delivering quality programs that build successful businesses and promote asset accumulation.”

Vision Statement:

“To take each woman that we serve to the next level of success and beyond.”

PACE’s Women’s Business Center offers a comprehensive program that is designed to give motivated entrepreneurs and business owners access to the necessary resources and support that will help them rise to the next level of success.  Our services are offered in a tiered program structure that meets the needs of women business owners as they move through different stages of growth.  Furthermore, we understand the importance of connecting our clients together and have built in opportunities for all of our women business owners to meet, whether at one of our networking events or through our online directory.  We also give more established women business owners the chance to stay involved and serve as mentors to clients who are in the beginning stages. The programs and services that meet the identified needs of both start up and established women business owners are divided into three main categories.

Funded in part through a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Workshop Training

  • Entrepreneurial Training – a 25 hour curriculum that gives clients the tools that they need to build a solid foundation for their business.  
  • Micro-enterprise Training – comprised of three separate 12 hour tracks that are geared toward addressing the most pressing needs of the existing business owners that we serve: marketing essentials, financial management essentials and business plan essentials.  This is a 1-2-3 curriculum that helps business owners advance their skills.
  • Financial Empowerment for Women – a series of 8 workshops that were designed to give women a place to learn all about personal finances and how to make their money work for them!
  • Other workshops – we also offer a variety of other workshops ranging from creating an online presence, to protecting your business idea, qualifying for financing and more. 

Technical Assistance

  • One-on-one counseling – our doors are always open for our clients to come in and receive personal guidance from one of our staff consultants.
  • MicroTeam Volunteers – clients can access our network of expert volunteer consultants by first sitting down with a PACE consultant to identify the primary area of need, clients will then be referred to the volunteer that can best serve that need.
  • MicroMentor – clients can also check our network of online volunteer consultants to find the experience they are looking for; or to create a profile and be a mentor to someone else.
  • Loan Packaging – we offer loan packaging services for clients that need to apply for financing.  We make sure that our clients are applying for the appropriate amount of funding from the right place and can package loans from $500 to $250,000.  To learn more about some of the financing options that we offer click here.
  • Government Contracting – we offer education and assistance to qualified businesses that seek certification as a woman-owned small business in order to bid on government and private contracts.  In 1994, the federal government set a goal for federal agencies to award at least 5% of all prime and subcontract dollars to women-owned small businesses (WOSBs). Historically, despite the continued growth in the number and economic impact of women-owned firms, the 5% goal has never been achieved on a government-wide basis. Click here for more information on certification and how to do business with the federal government. (http://www.business.gov/expand/government-contracting/certification.html)

Networking Activities

  • Networking Breakfasts - “Business Legend” Speaker Series, Program Graduations, WBC Annual Event – maintaining contact with our clients and ensuring that clients are networking with each other is an important component of our program.  We do this through offering several different types of events where clients can meet to learn from each other and make valuable connections that could help to grow their business.  Networking events are held monthly – please see the Calendar for more information and check our Upcoming Events page to find out about other events that are happening soon.
  • Business Roundtables – offer the opportunity for our clients to get together to discuss business challenges and share solutions with other entrepreneurs who are facing or have faced similar issues.  These sessions are led by successful entrepreneurs and are a place where the realities of being a business owner are discussed in an open forum format.  To find out when the next business roundtable is scheduled please check our Calendar.
  • Client Directory – the purpose of our client directory is twofold: 1) to facilitate access and promote networking and collaboration among the wide network of small businesses within our PACE WBC family, and 2) to broaden exposure of our network of business members by providing online presence to the community at large.

SBA Logo

SBA's participation in this co-sponsorship is not an endorsement of the views, opinions, products or services of any co-sponsor or other person or entity. All SBA programs or co-sponsored programs are extended to the public on a non-discriminatory basis.

For more information contact us - Women’s Business Center Director, at 213-989-3153.

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