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Economic Development in Tigard

Start a Business

Tigard is home to a thriving business community of more than 3,300 firms. A mix of regionally and nationally renowned companies like Gerber Gear, Tazo Tea and Koi Fusion all operate in Tigard. Want to join Tigard’s growing business community? The City of Tigard’s Economic Development Department can help by providing you with the tools to start, build and grow your business. While starting a business can be overwhelming, the following steps will help you on your way to turning your dream business into a reality.

Recursos para empresas
Herramientas para ayudarlo a comenzar, administrar y hacer crecer su negocio.

Plan Your Business

The first step to starting any business begins with a business plan, research and preparation. Unsure where to begin? The following organizations can help:

Fund Your Business

There are many state and local tools available to help directly finance your business or advise you on ways to help pay capital, startup and operating costs.

FINANCIAL ADVISING

LOANS & GRANTS
  • U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Loans & Grants Offers financing and funding options for small businesses.
  • Ascent Funding
    Non-profit Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) providing small business lending in the Portland metro region.
  • Craft3 Certified non-profit Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) providing small business loans in Oregon and Washington.
  • Mercy Corp Northwest
    Provides loans and grants to new and existing businesses who may not qualify for traditional bank loans.
  • Micro Enterprise Services of Oregon CapitalLink
    Financing for small business entrepreneurs who are unable to access capital through traditional banking institutions.
  • Oregon Angel Fund
    Provides competitive angel investing ($100K - $2M+) to Oregon and SW Washington based entrepreneurs.
  • Oregon Entrepreneur Network Angel Oregon
    Held in the spring of each year, Angel Oregon offers competitive investment awards to early-stage companies, historically $200,000 - $300,000.
  • Innovation, Research and Technology Transfer Grants
    Tigard entrepreneurs and innovators have a new partner in Business Oregon to help bring their idea for a commercially viable product to market. Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) grants are competitive federal programs designed to stimulate technological innovation and provide new opportunities for small businesses to conduct research and development (R&D) with commercialization potential.
  • Small Business Investment Company (SBIC)
    SBICs are privately-owned and managed investment funds licensed and regulated by the Small Business Administration. They use their own capital, plus funds borrowed with an SBA guarantee, to make equity and debt investments in qualifying businesses.

Pick Your Location

Tigard has a wide variety of commercial sites that accommodate most business types. Where you choose to locate your business depends in part on the location of your target market, the type of business you will be operating, and your personal preferences. Downtown Tigard is a great place for small business and offer competitive incentives for making enhancements to your space that can help attract new customers (see step 10 for more information). Tigard is also home to a number of Class A office campuses, including Triangle Corporate Park and Lincoln Center. If you ‘re looking to locate your firm in Tigard, consider the following locations:

» Atwell off Main
» 6700 Sandburg Building 
» Tigard Corporate Center
» Sandburg Center
» Beveland Corporate Center
» Wall Street Industrial Park
» Lincoln Center - Availability Listing
» Hunziker Industrial flex space
» Tigard Triangle Professional Office Space

Before signing a lease or purchasing property for your business, we strongly encourage you to contact the City of Tigard’s Planner on Duty at 503-718-2421 or tigardplanneronduty@tigard-or.gov to ensure your business conforms to local zoning ordinances. Zoning ordinances can restrict or entirely ban specific types of businesses from operating in an area. Contacting the City about your business idea and location will also help identify any additional costs and permits that might be required for your business.

Choose a Business Name & Structure

  • Choose your business name. Before you register your business, you’ll need to choose a business name. Use the Oregon Secretary of State’s Business Name Search Tool to check if your desired business name is available.
  • Choose a business structure. There are many different organizational structures for you to choose from. Some common structures for a small business include a limited liability company (LLC) and sole proprietorship. Learn more about your options by clicking here or contact your local Small Business Development Center for advice about which structure is best for your business.

Register & Setup Your Business

  • Federal Apply online for your Employer Identification Number (EIN). This allows you to report and pay federal employee taxes.
  • State of Oregon
    Businesses operating in Oregon must register with the State. A Business Identification Number (BIN) will be assigned to you, allowing you to report and pay Oregon payroll taxes.

Get City Licenses

If you want to operate a business in the City of Tigard, you will need a business license. The fee for a business license is paid annually, and the fee amount varies depending on your number of employees. Visit the City of Tigard’s Business License page for the latest fee schedule.

How to Apply for a City of Tigard business license:

Additional Considerations:

  • Home Occupation Permit: Required if you are doing business out of your home. Click here for more information and to apply online (navigate to the “Other Permits May Be Required” tab).
  • Social Gaming License: If your business involves social gaming, you must submit a Social Gaming License application along with proper payment prior to starting operation. Click here for more information and to apply online (navigate to the “Social Gaming License Application” tab).
  • Temporary Business License: Required for businesses that are temporary in nature. Complete the Business License Application and return it with your $25.00 payment.
  • Alarm Permit: If your business has an active alarm system, you must complete an Alarm Permit Application and pay the appropriate fee to the Tigard Police Department. For more information regarding security alarm permits, please call the Alarm Coordinator at 503-718-2565 or apply online by clicking here.
  • Sign Permit: Some business signs require permits. A sign permit application can be obtained from the Tigard Permit Center at 13125 SW Hall Blvd. Application and general information can also be found by clicking here. Signs in the public right-of-way, such as on public sidewalks and landscape strips, are not allowed under any circumstance.
  • Mobile Food Carts in Tigard: Interested in opening a food cart in Tigard? Read this handout for rules and regulations. En español: http://www.tigard-or.gov/business/docs/food_carts_espanol.pdf

Get Building Permits

Making changes to your space? Contact the City of Tigard Building Department at 503-718-2439 or tigardbuildingpermits@tigard-or.gov to determine if building permits are needed to make improvements or repairs. Permits are generally needed to construct, enlarge, alter, repair, move or change the occupancy or intensity of use of a building or structure or electrical, gas, mechanical or plumbing system. Skip this step if you’re not making any changes to your building.

Fulfill Additional Registration Requirements

In addition to City of Tigard requirements, other local and State requirements may apply to your business.  For general information on permits and licensing visit Oregon Business Xpress. To find out what additional licenses and permits you may need, visit the Business Referral Wizard.

ADDITIONAL CONSIDERATIONS

Get Insurance

  • Workers’ Compensation Insurance
    Oregon requires all employers to have workers’ compensation insurance on their employees. The Small Business Ombudsman provides information and assistance to small businesses regarding workers’ compensation insurance.
  • Business Insurance

    Depending on your business structure, business insurance can help ensure that your business and personal assets are fully protected from unexpected catastrophes. The U.S. Small Business Administration and Insurance U both offer straight forward information that can help identify the type of business insurance that’s right for you.

Take Advantage of Local Incentives

The City of Tigard offers competitive incentives to encourage business growth and expansion.

  • Urban Renewal Matching Funds: Matching fund grants to make improvements to businesses in the City Center Urban Renewal district.
  • Tigard-Lake Oswego Enterprise Zone: This program offers a 100% tax abatement for three to five years on new capital investments when for qualifying firms that increase employment by 10%.

Grow Your Business

  • Small Business Administration Provides tips and resources to help you grow your business.
  • U.S. Commercial Service Portland Leading trade promotion agency in the U.S. Dedicated to helping small-to-medium sized companies develop international markets, get started in exporting, and increase sales to new global markets.
  • Worksource Oregon Statewide group dedicated to stimulating job growth by connecting businesses and workers with the resources they need to succeed, including workforce training and hiring services to help employers find employees and build the skills of their workforce. 
  • SBDC Global Trade Center Want to sell your products to customers outside the U.S.? Need to import products from your global supply chain? No-cost trade assistance from the Global Trade Center can help you assess your company’s readiness, plan toward export success, help you find the right markets, export your products and get paid.
  • SBDC Innovation To help bring innovative concepts to the marketplace and help Oregon businesses grow, the Small Business Development Center assists qualified Oregon companies in preparing proposals for Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) grants. SBIR/STTR are competitive federal grant programs that award funding to small businesses to engage in research and development that have the potential to commercialize new technologies.
  • SBDC Market Research Institute The Market Research Institute provides customized research reports and market intelligence for established businesses that anticipate growth. This data helps businesses identify opportunities, better understand the competitive landscape, refine business plans, and make smarter, more informed business decisions.
  • SCALE Oregon
    This opportunity is for business leaders who have created a measure of success with their company and need strategic resources to get to the next level. SCALE Oregon business advising includes:
    • Strategic needs assessment
    • Advanced market research and analysis
    • Digital media assistance
    • Search engine optimization guidance
    • CEO networking/mentorin
  • WorkSystems Non-profit that develops policies and designs workforce development programs and services to help people get the skills, training, and education they need to go to work or to advance their careers. 
  • U.S. Small Business Administration 504 Loan Program
    The Federal SBA 504 loan program provides financing guarantees for up to 90% of the purchase cost of commercial real estate in concert with your preferred commercial lender. SBA backed 504 loans are ideal for the purchase of existing buildings, the purchase of land or land improvements, renovating existing facilities, furniture and/or equipment purchases, and more.
  • Grow Oregon
    This opportunity is for business leaders who have created a measure of success with their company and need strategic resources to get to the next level.  Grow Oregon business advising includes:
    • Strategic needs assessment
    • Advanced market research and analysis
    • Digital media assistance
    • Search engine optimization guidance
    • CEO networking/mentoring

A limited number of spots are open. Contact Mike Kelsay with PCC SBDC more information and to confirm if your business is eligible.

Minority and Woman-Owned Business Resources

  • United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce America’s largest Hispanic business organization, promoting the growth, development and interests of Hispanic-owned businesses.
  • Minority Business Development Agency Agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce that promotes the growth of minority-owned business through the mobilization and advancement of public and private sector programs, policy, and research.
  • National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) NAWBO is a one-stop resource to help propel women business owners into greater economic, social and political spheres of power worldwide.
  • SBDC Latino Outreach Program  This program of the Small Business Development center targets established Latino-owned or operated businesses with advising to expand business productivity through market research, capital acquisition and strategic planning. Specialized services include counseling about ways to recruit and leverage the unemployed or under-employed Latino workforce.

  • Small Business Administration Office of Women’s Business Ownership Seeks to enable and empower women entrepreneurs through advocacy, outreach, education and support.  
  • Minority and Women Business Enterprises (MWBE) Seeks to provide a single starting point for resources and information specifically targeted to minority and woman owned businesses.
  • Oregon Association of Minority Entrepreneurs Non-profit with a mission to promote and develop entrepreneurship and economic development for ethnic minorities in Oregon and SW Washington. Offers free technical assistance, business counseling, and access to capital.
  • Women Entrepreneurs of Southern Oregon (WESO) WESO is a community of dynamic entrepreneurs helping each other achieve business goals through networking, education, and inspiration.
  • Hispanic Metropolitan Chamber Works to increase the economic advancement of Latinos in Oregon and SW Washington. Provides one-on-one technical assistance, networking events, and business seminars, among other services.
  • Women’s Business Center - Mercy Corps Northwest Works to elevate women entrepreneurs by educating, financing and counseling them through the process of starting and growing a business. Offers one-on-one consulting, mentoring, networking, and educational opportunities along with grants and microloans for women-owned businesses.
  • Certification Office for Business Inclusion and Diversity The sole certification authority for the State of Oregon, providing a certification process that opens the door to targeted government contracting opportunities for minority and women-owned businesses.
  • AVITA Offers consulting services with results driven training classes for women, minorities, and persons with disabilities that are starting or growing a business.
  • Micro Mercantes Bilingual business development services for food entrepreneurs. Offers courses, a shared commissary kitchen, and educational resources, including a step-by-step guide to starting a food business. 
  • Small Business Administration Office of Native American Affairs Works to ensure that American Indians, Alaska Natives and Native Hawaiians have full access to the necessary business development and expansion tools available through entrepreneurial development, lending and procurement programs.
  • Our Native American Business Network (ONABEN) Non-profit created to increase the success of Native American owned businesses.

Additional Resources

Business Education & Information

  • Oregon Microenterprise Network: Dedicated to gathering promising business ideas and opportunities from around the world and informing newsletter subscribers of emerging trends in the business world. 

Networking  

  • Oregon Entrepreneurs Network (OEN): OEN is the largest entrepreneur assistance organization in the state of Oregon. Connect with peers through their networking events.
  • Oregon Association of Minority Entrepreneurs: Non-profit with a mission to promote and develop entrepreneurship and economic development for ethnic minorities in Oregon and SW Washington.
  • Women Entrepreneurs of Southern Oregon (WESO): WESO is a community of dynamic entrepreneurs helping each other achieve business goals through networking, education, and inspiration.
  • Tigard Chamber of Commerce: Helps create a vibrant, entrepreneurial environment within Tigard through key programs, partnerships and alliances that grow and retain current business, and attract, launch and sustain new business. Provides opportunities for businesses to network and gain exposure through a unique mix of programs, networking events and marketing tools.
  • Westside Economic Alliance: Non-profit, member-based organization that provides its members with a common voice on local, regional and state issues, and operates as a problem solver and “one-stop-shop” for the entire Westside business community.

Crime Prevention

  • Tigard Police Department Commercial Crimes Unit The Tigard Police Department’s Commercial Crimes Unit (CCU) is unlike any other crime fighting unit in the nation. Uniquely funded through the city’s business licensing fees, three full-time police officers (two investigators and a supervisor) provide dedicated service to local merchants and area businesses to investigate and address the types of crime that impact their bottom line. This unit can proactively review crime prevention techniques with you through a one-on-one consultation that will help improve the safety of your business. Contact Sergeant Leigh Erickson at 503-718-2761 or leigh.erickson@tigard-or.gov for more info.

 Legal Assistance

Contact
Dylan Bemis
Economic Development Coordinator

503-718-2560
dylanb@tigard-or.gov 
Business resource Guide
Looking to open a business in Tigard? This step-by-step guide will help you get started.
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