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The Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at Headwaters is part of a statewide network of resource and technical service providers that assist both, start-up and existing businesses. The SBDC professional staff provides confidential business counseling, training and information to small business leaders and entrepreneurs. With assistance from our staff, business leaders can develop and enhance the financial, managerial and technical skills they need to compete and succeed in today’s complex business environment.


The counseling and training assistance services are provided to all small business populations in Beaverhead, Deer Lodge, Granite, Jefferson, Madison, Powell and Silver Bow counties. Our counseling services are provided at no charge and are funded by the Small Business Administration, Montana Department of Commerce, Headwaters RC&D Area Inc., and local lenders.

Business Plan Development

Step-by-step assistance in writing plans for business start-ups and existing businesses.


Market Assistance

We will help you analyze the market and guide you in the development of a marketing plan.


Financial Technical Assistance

We will help you analyze your financial statements, provide credit analysis, work with you to set up a financial plan, and guide you toward banks and alternative financing.


Low-Cost Training

Comprehensive training in all areas of business management: short business 101 courses, take-home training modules, and access to a 12-week business planning course. Business Start-up Workshops Business 101 workshops help you decide if starting a business is for you.

Entrepreneurial Development 

One-on-one consultation for existing and start-up business management.

It Pays to Prepare

Although many of Headwaters’ services are free of charge, it is important to understand that in order to facilitate a productive counseling session, the client should develop as much information as possible about the business they would like to start or expand.

For more information please contact:

Courtney Loeffler

SBDC Regional Director              


Logann Lovshin

SBDC Business Advisor            


What steps do I need to take to establish a business in Montana?


Step 1:

Conduct a quick business name search to ensure your name is not already taken: Click here

Step 2:

Consult your attorney and CPA to determine the type of business entity you should choose.

Step 3:

Register your business with the Montana Secretary of State: Click here 

  • If you are choosing an entity besides a Sole Proprietor, you can use this link to register your entity with the Montana Secretary of State, Create your Articles of Organization and file your EIN in one simply step and for one affordable fee : Click here.  (If you use this link, you may jump to Step 5)


Step 4:

Apply for a Federal ID number: Click here


Step 5:

Find and apply for a professional license: Click here  (Select- find a professional licensing board to locate a license for your industry).


Step 6:

Inquire to see if you need an inspection or permit: Click here.


Step 7:

Obtain a business license for your city and/or county.

Step 8:

Set up a business bank account (You will need proof of business name & Federal ID number).


Step 9:

Purchase liability and other applicable business insurance (consult your agent).


Step 10:

Work with insurance agent & CPA to determine if you need worker’s compensation or an independent contractor’s exemption (this is important).


For questions on Worker’s compensation visit here or consult your insurance agent.


For questions on Independent contractor’s exemption consult your CPA.

Check out this helpful video on developing a good business model!

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Funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Interested in starting your own business?

Download the MTSBDC Business Startup Toolkit        

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