Helping LA County Small Businesses Start and Grow!
Supporting LA County’s Businesses
The Department of Economic Opportunity is home to the Office of Small Business – LA County’s one stop shop dedicated to help small – micro business owners and entrepreneurs kick start and grow.
OSB can help you:
Kick Start a New Business: Access free one-on-one individualized counseling tailored to help you kick-start & launch your small business through our Small Business Concierge.
Get Certified: Get your small business certified and registered with LA County – your first step in doing business with LA County!
Access Benefits & Incentives: Receive price preferences, exposure, and VIP access to County networking events.
Connect to Contracting Opportunities: Learn about the many small business certification preference programs that can help small businesses gain new contracting opportunities.
Explore & Grow Your Business: Enroll in specialized webinars, workshops, & trainings on how to contract, get certified, and successfully open a new business.
Connect with the office of small business
Our Office of Small Business is here to help!
Access FREE one-on-one business counseling sessions in-person, online or over the phone! Stop by our East Los Angeles Entrepreneur Center or make an appointment through our virtual small business concierge.
Small business contracting
As a small business, contracting with a government agency can seem unreachable or overwhelming, it can also be a game changer for growing your revenue and your businesses overall. Our Office of Small Business can help walk you through the process of becoming a government contractor.
Do Business with LA County
Los Angeles County is pleased to supply this listing of open bids. Open Bids can be searched by Commodity Description, County Department, Bid title and number.
- Access list of open bids and solicitations here.
To do business with the County of Los Angeles suppliers must first register in the County’s vendor registration system. This process alerts the County as to the products and services that each supplier has to offer. The registration process only takes a few minutes and may be done electronically. All that is needed is access to the Internet. If your company does not have internet access, you may gain access through any public library. Once you enter the website, you will be led through the registration process using easy-to-follow instructions.
- Access online registration here.
Compete for Government Contracts
The APEX Accelerator Program is operated by DEO and is funded in part through an agreement with the Department of Defense.
APEX helps your business compete for government contracts by connecting you to:
- 1:1 Counseling on government contracting for your business
- Workshops to prepare for the government contracting process
- Local, state and federal contracting opportunities relevant to your industry
- Training on how to market your goods and services to government buyers
- Networking events to meet buyers
- Individualized counseling on writing proposals, conducting market research, and more
Sign up for a tailored assessment, access workshops, trainings, and networking events, and see latest contracting opportunities. Visit here to schedule an appointment with an APEX Counselor today.
Register with LA County
Vendors who register with Los Angeles County can participate in:
- Online access to County Open Bids
- Be placed on Bid lists generated online by County Departments looking for prospective vendors
- Periodically be notified by email of County Bids by specific commodities or services
- May qualify to register in the County’s Preference Programs
Workforce Business Services
The Department of Economic Opportunity is also the administrator of LA County’s 19 America’s Job Centers of California (AJCC). The AJCCs offer no cost workforce services to businesses, non-profits, micro-and social enterprises. AJCC staff comprise of job developers and Business Services Representatives (BSRs) which can help your organization gain a competitive edge by helping you source, recruit & hire talent while also helping you tap into workforce financial incentives such as subsidized wages. BSRs can help your business by:
1. Providing customized industry trends, sponsoring employer forums, conducting economic development planning, identifying workforce challenges and solutions.
2. Navigating and identifying relevant workforce tax credits and financial Incentives available for your business to increase your bottom line.
3. Helping with Employment Law compliance by facilitating a variety of informational seminars for your staff on topics such as Disability Insurance, Unemployment Insurance, Employment Law: Health & Safety, Wages, Work Hours, Work Permits, Workers Comp, Fair Chance Act, Employment Taxes, and more
4. Conducting customized screening and referral of qualified job seekers to meet your workforce investment needs by assisting your business with talent acquisition needs such as
- Connecting job seekers with employers through job fairs, resume matches, and more!
- Coordinating a focused recruitment campaign for a new business venture or a facility needing a large number of specialized workers
- Pre-screening candidates via pre-employment testing or background checks
- Assisting with new hire paperwork
- Providing access to untapped labor pools, such as youth and veterans
Get Involved! Discover new resources
Connect to LA County’s Certification portal
The County’s business preference programs encourage business owners who are minorities, women, disadvantaged or disabled veterans to capitalize on opportunities in government and private-sector procurement programs. DEO provides the following certification programs:
Local Small Business Enterprise (LSBE) Preference Program**
The LSBE Preference Program boosts contracting opportunities for small businesses in LA County. Certified LSBEs receive payment within 15 days of receipt of an undisputed invoice for goods or services with the use of the Prompt Payment Stamp.
Social Enterprise (SE) Preference Program**
The SE Preference Program was designed to increase contracting opportunities for enterprises whose primary purpose is to enhance Los Angeles County through economic, social, and environmental sustainability.
Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise (DVBE) Preference Program**
The DVBE Preference Program is designed to enhance purchasing and contracting opportunities for businesses owned by disabled veterans.
Community Business Enterprise (CBE) Program
The CBE program includes designations as a Woman Business Enterprise (WBE), Minority Business Enterprise (MBE), Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) and LGBTQQ owned businesses. This program allows participating businesses to capitalize on opportunities in government and private-sector procurement. These businesses will be included in the County’s CBE listing. Many County departments, public agencies, private-sector prime and subcontractors use the CBE listing to meet subcontracting goals.**The LSBE, DVBE and SE preference programs have a bid preference where the eligible enterprise will receive up to 15% bid price reduction or ‘preference’ when bidding on certain goods and services solicited by Los Angeles County.
Get Involved! Discover new resources
Get Involved! Discover new resources
Supporting Local Mom and Pop Stores
Team DEO kick started Shop Local LA County to support mom & pop stores and strengthen the bonds that connect our communities. Through Shop Local, small businesses can also connect to wide range of resources to support their economic and digital growth including social media training, digital marketing resources, and coaching!
Save Time, Money, and Resources!
Small businesses in LA County can connect with legal experts and access ongoing webinars, one-on-one counseling, and legal academies at NO-COST to help businesses maintain their status, personnel, property, and revenue streams! See complete calendar listing of upcoming workshops, webinars and presentations.
Know Your Rights!
Sidewalk vending is legal in LA County! With support from local and regional partners, DEO is helping sidewalk vendors connect to legal pathways to operate their business, support compliance with related health and safety regulations, and increase access to affordable code compliant food carts. Get started and stay compliant with regulations!
Microenterprise Home Kitchen Operations (MEHKOS) in LA County
LA County is considering a new law that will allow residents to legally operate a miniature restaurant in their home kitchen (not including cities of Pasadena, Long Beach or Vernon), also known as MEHKOs, or Microenterprise Home Kitchen Operations. MEHKOs is a state law that if passed locally, will provide entrepreneurs and aspiring chefs a legal pathway to:
- Prepare, and serve food to the public, as allowed by State law, similar to a mini restaurant;
- Make up to 90 meals per week and 30 meals per day; and
- Earn up to $100,000 in revenue
Find out how MEHKOS impact you.
Join Team DEO and the Department of Public Health for our upcoming town halls on street vending in LA County and the discussion of the potential new law that will allow residents to legally operate a miniature restaurant in their home kitchen. Dates and times to come.
Missed the latest virtual town halls? We got you covered! Watch our latest MEHKOs webinars in both English and Spanish below!
Interested in receiving information on MEHKOS?
Scan QR code or click on the link below to receive the latest information.
Virtual Town Hall (English)
Virtual Town Hall (Spanish)
Small Business Commission
DEO is home to LA County’s Small Business Commission. The County Board of Supervisors appointed Small Business Commissioners to serve in each of the five Supervisorial Districts. The Commission, appointed by the LA County Board of Supervisors to serve in each of the five Supervisorial Districts, provides ongoing advice and support to help businesses start, grow, and stay within LA County.
View agendas for December 22nd meetings: