WHO DOES WHAT?
SEE THE FOLLOWING OVERVIEW: WBRA Profile Sheet
The Worcester Business Resource Alliance network is a group of non-profit and government organizations located in or serving the small businesses and entrepreneurs of the City of Worcester, Massachusetts. They provide low- or no-cost services and programs, and funding to help entrepreneurs and small business owners start, grow, and succeed. Click on each member name to go to their respective web site.
11 Shattuck St., Worcester, MA 01605
Ascentria Care Alliance (formerly Lutheran Social Services) is a non-profit organization that provides a variety of services including a Micro-enterprise Development Program to train and assist refugees to start or strengthen their own business.
400 Grove Street, Suite 206, Worcester, MA 01605
Nancy Cahalen, President & CEO
P: (508) 552-0350
For more than 100 years, the Better Business Bureau has been helping people find businesses, brands and charities they can trust. There are local, independent BBBs across the United States, Canada and Mexico, including BBB of Central New England, which was founded in 1940 and serves 225 communities in Worcester, Hampshire, Hampden, Franklin, and Berkshire counties, as well as parts of Middlesex County, and seven towns in Connecticut.
Michelle Miller, Program Manager
P: (508) 363-2300
Provides start-ups and existing business owners the opportunity to become economically self-sufficient and prosperous through entrepreneurship by offering an array of services including educational programs, classes, consulting, and networking opportunities.
City of Worcester, Business & Community Development Division
City Hall 4th Floor, 455 Main Street Worcester, MA 01608
Peter Dunn, Business & Community Dev. Coordinator
P: (508) 799-1400 x31419
The City of Worcester Business & Community Development Division provides a multitude of programs to interested developers, entrepreneurs, and business owners, providing a link between available local, state, and federal incentives and loan programs. Staff also offer technical assistance for new and existing businesses who are navigating the different municipal departments and processes.
340 Main St., Suite 400, Worcester, MA 01608
Workforce Central, a ONE-STOP Career Center, provides local businesses the essential services to support their workforce needs, as well as a variety of related resources at no cost.
Main Branch – 3 Salem Street, Worcester, MA 01608
Jackie Dzugan, Business Librarian
The Small Business Center at the Worcester Public Library offers online databases, tutorials, onsite SCORE counseling, and “Ask a Librarian” email research by information professionals to individuals with small business and entrepreneurial pursuits.
237 Chandler Street, Worcester, MA 01609
Raffaela Fitzpatrick, Small Business Administrator
P: (508) 713-9760
SMOC Financial Services helps provide a better quality of life in the underserved community through business development, culturally focused pre-employment training, and business incubation services. The facility offers business incubation space at affordable prices and offers free use of a business resources library. In addition, SMOC Financial Services offers Microloan financing.
Main office: 529 Main Street, Schrafft’s Center, Suite 1M10, Charlestown, MA 02129
Lisa Silva, Commercial Loan Officer, MetroWest, Worcester & Western MA
The MGCC mission is to create and preserve jobs at small businesses, women and minority owned businesses, and to promote economic development in underserved, gateway municipalities and low and moderate income communities. MGCC provides a centralized resource at the state level that offers working capital, loan guarantees, and targeted technical assistance to solve specific financial and operational problems.
89 Shrewsbury Street, Suite 300, Worcester, MA 01604
The mission of the Massachusetts Office of Business Development (MOBD) is to strengthen the economy and increase job growth throughout Massachusetts by providing to businesses that are seeking to expand or locate in the Commonwealth a highly responsive, central point of contact that facilitates access to resources, expertise, and incentive programs available in the Commonwealth.
89 Shrewsbury Street, Suite 300, Worcester, MA 01604
Christine McNally, Business Development Specialist, Center for Workforce Development & Continuing Education, QCC 508-751-7929
Quinsigamond Community College’s Center for Workforce Development and Continuing Education offers high quality training programs that enable individuals to learn new skills which can be applied immediately on the job or utilized for future professional development. Our focus is to provide the practical skills that can help participants improve competencies, secure employment, and experience personal enrichment.
The Center for Workforce Development and Continuing Educations offers free workshops for businesses with 100 employees or less and are in good standing with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Visit their Spring Course offerings.
446 Main Street, Suite 200, Worcester, MA 01608
Paul McCarthy, Worcester Chapter Volunteer
P: (508) 753-2929
SCORE is a national nonprofit dedicated to educating entrepreneurs and helping small businesses start, grow, and succeed. SCORE is a resource partner with the U.S. SBA, and its business-experienced mentors have advised small business owners since 1964.
SCORE is a network of over 10,000 volunteers who offer FREE and confidential business advice. SCORE also offers occasional low cost group workshops locally, as well as free online workshops. SCORE’s website provides resources, templates and tools to assist entrepreneurs in developing success plans.
SCORE’s Worcester Chapter currently has approximately 30 volunteers who will meet face-to-face with in-business clients at their sites, or with anyone at one of seven regional Chambers of Commerce, including Worcester’s. Please review the chapter’s website for more details, including how to request an always-free appointment online or by phone.
Learn more about SCORE from this episode of the Chamber Exchange.
The Carriage House, 125 Woodland Street, Worcester, MA 01610
Cheryl Miller, Senior Business Advisor
P: (508) 793-7615
The Central Regional Office of the MA SBDC Network provides free and confidential business assistance to prospective and existing small businesses. The program is in partnership with the U.S. SBA, the Mass. Office of Business Development and Clark University. Since 1980 the SBDC at Clark University has worked with over 20,000 entrepreneurs and assisted in raising over $380 million in financing for them. Business advising covers a wide array of management concerns such as business plan development, feasibility studies, buying or selling a business, financing and loan packaging, cash flow analysis, marketing and sales, personnel issues, technology and equity based business models, international trade and government contracting.
The Venture Forum is a volunteer organization that serves entrepreneurs starting and/or growing technology-based businesses. It does this through monthly networking events, lectures, start-up case presentations, mentoring, and an annual venture competition with cash and in-kind prizes. Monthly programs are held primarily at Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Worcester, MA, but also at other Worcester campuses. Check their web site, or join their mailing list to receive notices about upcoming programs and opportunities.
44 Portland Street, 4th Floor, Worcester MA 01608
Marc Printz, Community Manager
P: (508) 425-7177
The WorcLab provides both the physical and network resources companies need to propel their ideas to market. Founded and operated by the Institute for Energy and Sustainability, we are a community in the heart of central Massachusetts dedicated to building change. The WorcLab facility, located in the Printers Building at 44 Portland Street in Worcester, provides over 10,000 square feet that offers private offices, co-working space, conference rooms, event space, and prototyping labs.
Contact: Sandra Wellinghoff; email@example.com
Contact: Gina Betti; firstname.lastname@example.org
The 2020 novel coronavirus pandemic has caused many small businesses and non-profits to rethink business models and purpose. To help these organizations stay viable, the Foisie Business School created a free service. We pair teams of students, faculty advisors and a SBDC counselor with a small business or nonprofits to help them digitally transform their operations. From changing onsite operations to remote to changing in-person sales to e-commerce models, we are providing services without a fee.
311 Main Street, Suite 200, Worcester, MA 01608
Jacob Vazquez, Economic Development Associate
P: 508-753-2924, ext. 227
The Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce is the largest chamber in New England with more than 2,300 member businesses and organizations. The Chamber recruits businesses to the area, works to retain current businesses, and incubates new businesses. The Chamber is a partner in an initiative to retain and support entrepreneurial students and recent graduates from area colleges, called StartUp Worcester. The Chamber offers more than 200 events each year including networking opportunities, seminars, roundtables, and conferences. Most events are open to non-members. Browse their website, or join their mailing list to receive notices about upcoming programs and opportunities.
25 Francis Street, Worcester, MA 01606
Shon Rainford, Senior Project Manager
P: (508) 667-5792
The Worcester Regional Food Hub helps develop and grow food businesses by assisting start-ups negotiate everything needed to enter the food scene including utilization of the Food Hub Kitchen, assistance with regulatory compliance, and gaining access to markets. The Food Hub also connects farmers to markets, allowing them to focus more time on farming while keeping more of the food dollar.
4 King Street, Worcester, MA 01610
Addison Turner, Director
P: (508) 343-0045
Worcester Roots supports the creation of cooperative businesses and the conversion of existing businesses into cooperatively-owned. We organize regular workshops and intensive Cooperative Business Academies, as well as offer technical assistance, mentorship and connection to networks of support.
WBRA AFFILIATE ORGANIZATIONS:
Affiliate organizations are also part of Worcester’s business resource network, but do not necessarily attend WBRA member meetings.
Jon Weaver, President and CEO
17 Briden Street
Worcester, MA 01605
MBI is a private, independent economic development organization that serves as a catalyst for life science and healthcare innovation. We help start biomedical companies and create jobs within the Biotechnology, Medical Device, Informatics, and Biomanufacturing industry by providing secure, clean bench and sink surface, staff trained and fully licensed laboratory space for usage by “seed stage” companies. Building and maintaining collaborative affiliations and partnerships are essential to our success.
89 Shrewsbury Street, Ste 300, Worcester, MA 01604
MassDevelopment, the state’s economic development and finance agency, works with businesses, nonprofits, financial institutions and communities to stimulate economic growth across the Commonwealth. Through these collaborations we help create jobs, increase the number of housing units, revitalize urban environments, and address factors limiting economic growth including transportation, energy and infrastructure deficiencies.
MassMEP is a collaborative center comprised of government, business, and academic partners dedicated to helping Massachusetts manufacturers meet the challenges of competing in an ever-changing economy. MassMEP provides Massachusetts manufacturers with the resources they need to prepare for success in today’s advanced manufacturing environment. With real-world experience and expertise, MassMEP partners have the unique ability to help manufacturers identify, analyze, and overcome strategic, operational, and workforce challenges that may be blocking their path to growth and success.
VentureMeets is a networking event based out of Worcester, MA that focuses on connecting entrepreneurs, business professionals, students and people who are looking to start a business. VentureMeets helps entrepreneurs in the area share knowledge, stay up to date on emerging strategies, and build a strong and supportive business network in the Metro-West area.
Worcester Local First is a non-profit association of local, independent businesses. Its mission is to connect consumers and businesses to create a stronger local economy and make Worcester a more vibrant, diverse, and sustainable community.
In the spirit of civic responsibility, the WBDC was established to serve as an innovative and leading force in the economic development of the City of Worcester and the region, expanding the tax base through the creation and promotion of employment opportunities, while assisting in the development and growth of business and industry.