Besides its near-perfect southern California weather, low crime rate (it’s frequently been called the safest city in America) and median household income of over $96K, this year, Irvine, California, was also voted the best-run city in the nation. In addition, the affluent Orange County suburban city has been named one of the best places to live in the U.S. several times by Money magazine (I’ll personally vouch for that, as a long-time Irvine resident myself). The city is adjacent to the John Wayne/Orange County Airport, which is very convenient for business owners.
If you’re contemplating locating your office space in Orange County, Irvine is a popular choice for large and small businesses alike. Here are three resources for small businesses in Irvine, California, to make sure your endeavor is a success.
200 W. Santa Ana Blvd
Santa Ana, CA 92701
Tel: (714) 550-7369
SCORE is a nationwide nonprofit association dedicated to helping small businesses get off the ground, grow and achieve their goals through education and mentorship. The SCORE OC Chapter covers all of Orange County, California, including Irvine, and services are low-cost or free.
According to SCORE mentor Elissa Warantz, small businesses come to SCORE for help with everything from starting a business (e.g., what do they need to do legally to start up a business, what sort of business entity to choose, how to incorporate, how to register a fictitious business name), to improving the cash flow of an existing business (e.g., cutting costs, increasing revenues), to expanding once they've achieved business success (e.g., improving marketing and sales, managing employees, leasing new locations).
“We serve everyone from startups to established businesses, with a combination of face-to-face mentoring, workshops, online counseling, business Advisory Panels and our CEO Forum program for established business owners with significant revenues,” says Warantz.
Irvine Chamber of Commerce
2485 McCabe Way, Suite 150
Irvine, CA 92614
Tel: (949) 660-9112
The Irvine Chamber of Commerce helps promote the city’s business community by providing training and networking opportunities and advocating for the interests of the business community with federal, state and local officials.
Check the organization’s website for free online seminars and events to attend. Once you become a member, you can attend Business Exchange meetings, networking luncheons and leads groups to help grow your business.
Small Business Administration
200 W. Santa Ana Blvd., Suite 700
Santa Ana, CA 92701
Tel: (714) 550-7420
Located in the same building as SCORE’s Orange County office, the Santa Ana, California, SBA office organizes workshops all over Orange County, partners with SCORE to provide business owners with mentoring and counseling, and can help you find a local Irvine SBA lender to give you a small business loan.
If your business sells products or services to the government, the SBA can also help connect you with a procurement expert to walk you through the process.
Deciding where to locate your small business takes time, but making an effort to learn what you would gain by locating your business in Irvine, CA or any other city you are considering can save a lot of time and trouble later down the road. These resources could really make the difference in your business.
Image by Flickr user Neil Kremer (Creative Commons)