SBA: Montana Business Smart

Learn what it takes to have a successful start up: Register for one of the SBA’s upcoming Montana Business Smart webinars!

IN THESE WORKSHOPS YOU WILL: Gain a basic understanding of the key steps to getting your business off the ground. Learn about various financing options and what banks look for when lending money. Learn about the local resources available to assist you in starting and growing a small business.

  • January 19 – Tuesday, 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM MST
  • February 16 – Tuesday, 11:00 AM – 2:00 PM MST
  • March 16 – Tuesday, 12:00 PM – 3:00 PM MDT
  • April 20 – Tuesday, 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM MDT
  • May 18 – Tuesday, 11:00 AM – 2:00 PM MDT
  • June 15 – Tuesday, 12:00 PM – 3:00 PM MDT

*Note: Each workshop consists of three modules (Ready, Set, Go) which are approximately one hour each. A typical workshop takes 3-4 hours with breaks. Participants that complete the entire workshop will receive a Certificate of Completion at the conclusion along with workshop materials and opportunities for additional individual business counseling if requested.

**All workshops are currently being delivered via webinar due to COVID considerations. Future workshops may be conducted at various sites and in person.


  • Martin DeWitt, Senior Area Manager, 406-459-5347 or
  • Andy Shirtliff, Outreach and Marketing Specialist, 406-249-4546 or

Montana Department of Commerce: Coronavirus Taskforce Update

Montana Governor's Coronavirus Task Force

The state recognizes the substantial economic impact that some businesses have experienced due to novel coronavirus or COVID-19. The Department of Commerce in partnership with the U.S. Small Business Administration are working to hard to make emergency funding available for those businesses.

When disaster assistance will be available in Montana

  • If a small business has suffered substantial economic injury as a result of COVID-19, it may be eligible for financial assistance from the U.S. Small Business Administration.
  • Small businesses and small agricultural cooperatives that have suffered substantial economic injury may be eligible for the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Program.
  • Substantial economic injury is the inability of a business to meet its obligations as they mature and to pay its ordinary and necessary operating expenses.
  • An EIDL can help meet necessary financial obligations that a business could have met had the disaster not occurred.
  • It provides relief from economic injury caused directly by the disaster and permits the business to maintain a reasonable working capital position during the period affected by the disaster.
  • The SBA provides EIDL assistance only to those businesses that SBA determines are unable to obtain credit elsewhere.
  • The loan amount will be based on the business’ actual economic injury and financial needs.
  • The interest rate on EIDLs is currently at 3.75 percent per year.
  • The term of the loans cannot exceed 30 years.
  • Terms and conditions will be determined by the business’ ability to repay the loan

Listed below is a step by step process for businesses that have experienced substantial economic injury as a result of COVID-19

  1. Complete the Economic Injury Worksheets as soon as possible, click here to access the worksheet, and submit it to your county Disaster and Emergency Services, (DES) Office.
  2. If your county does not have a DES office or if you are unable to contact them, the worksheet can be sent to
  3. Your county DES office will submit the worksheet to the state, and the state will submit it to the SBA along with a request for an SBA declaration.
  4. Once the SBA has issued an Economic Injury Disaster Loan declaration for your county, businesses will be eligible to apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan.
  5. Additional information on the loan program and how to apply can be found at the SBA website here.

For additional information, please contact the SBA disaster assistance customer service center. Call 1-800-659-2955 (TTY: 1-800-877-8339) or e-mail