We offer a host of resources and links to support Washington County’s individuals and businesses
Write a Business Plan

The following resources can help you develop a solid business plan. SCEC has compiled a list of resources to assist you in writing your business plan, and some stock templates to make getting started easier.

Maine Data

United States Data

Writing a Business Plan

Sample Business Plans and Templates

Start a business

There are a lot of things to consider when starting a business – market potential, cash flow, customer base, taxes and legal liabilities. These resources will help you navigate staring a business in Maine.

Maine Business Answers  — A guide to starting your business in Maine. Business Answers is the go-to place for starting, planning, and financing your business.

Maine.GOV: Starting a Business in Maine — Features information on everything from financing to business planning to licensing, marketing, product development and more.

Small Business Information–Offers blogs on a variety of small business issues, from employee management to franchising, and retirement planning.

Human Resource Management Templates—  Downloadable templates for performance reviews, job descriptions, and succession planning.

Develop products

These resources can help you turn a great idea into to an actual product. Once the product is developed, protect it through Patents & Trademarks. There are also resources on financing your new product.

Advanced Structures & Composites Center (AEWC) — A globally recognized leader in composites research and development.

Downeast Institute for Applied Marine Research & Education (DEI) — Based in Beals, DEI conducts research and development for Down East Maine’s fishing industry.

Maine Department of Agriculture Division of Market and Product Development — Resources for Maine farmers interested in developing value-added products.

Packaging the Taste of Maine  — Article by the Maine Organic Farmers & Gardeners Association (MOFGA) about developing Maine based value-added organic products.

Patents  & Trademarks

Canadian Intellectual Property Office — Canada’s intellectual property resource center offers general information, links, guides, and searches of Canadian intellectual property.

Fogler Library (U-Maine) Patent & Trademark Depository — A clearinghouse for patent, trademark, and copyright information. This site also links to state, federal and international patent offices.

International Trademark Association (INTA) — A one-stop resource for protecting your brand internationally. Learn about the organization’s programs, research, and benefits of international trademarking.

Maine Trademarks — Guide, forms and information about getting trademarks and names in the State of Maine.

Maine Trademark & Name Search  — Keyword searches of Maine corporations, and trademarks.

Patent & Trademark Resource Center Association (PTRCA) — Intellectual property resources depository with links to global patenting and trademark offices, databases and general information in over 30 countries.

US Copyright Office — Helpful FAQs and copyright information. Search copyright records or download forms, flyers and fact sheets.

US Patent & Trademark Office — File, check on the status of, or search for a patent or trademark registered in the United States.

US Patent & Trademark Office: Patents — Everything to get you started on the patenting process, including FAQs, patent guides, a searchable database and online filing.

US Patent & Trademark Office: Trademarks — Everything to get you started on the trademark process — FAQs, guides and keyword searches.

Worldwide Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO)— Offers global patent, trademark, and other intellectual property resources.

Financing New Products’s Guide to Getting New Products Funded — Articles and advice on funding, selling, marketing and licensing your new product.’s Guide to Grants, Small Business Loans and Government Programs — Funding opportunities for inventors and innovators.

Maine Technology Institute — Early-stage, patient capital for the research and development of innovative, technology based projects that create new products and services, generating jobs in the state of Maine.

Small Business Innovation Research Program — Funding for businesses with new and cutting edge technological products.

Identify your market

The success to any business is having a market for its product or service. This involves identifying your market and determining how to promote that product or service.

The following are resources to help you solve the market development puzzle. There are also resources on selling to the government and exporting your product or services.

Maine Made — Organization that markets and promotes the development of products “made in Maine”.

Marketing Maine Agricultural Products — Listing of farmers markets, fairs, and marketing techniques for Maine agricultural products.

Marketing Profs Marketing FAQs — FAQs that cover a wide range of market development topics.

UMaine Cooperative Extension Publications — Publications to help you market your Maine-made products.

Selling to the Government

System Award Management — Searchable federal procurement opportunities for small-businesses.

Maine Division of Purchases — Information on doing business with the State of Maine. This site includes forms, guides, and helpful links to other resources.

SBA Government Contracting — Programs, FAQs and general information tailored to small-businesses interested in doing business with the federal government.

Small Business Administration’s HUBZone Empowerment Contracting Program — Programs and services for businesses located in a HubZone (Historically Underutilized Business Zone) such as Washington County.

SBA Subcontracting Network (SUBNET) — Offers information and a searchable database for potential Federal subcontractors.

Maine Procurement and Technical Assistance Centers — Helps businesses across the state market their products to the government with hands-on technical assistance, workshops and other resources. Washington County businesses can receive these services free-of-charge through the Maine PTAC located at Northern Maine Development Commission.

Exporting — US Government export hub with trade resources including one-on-one assistance, financing opportunities, FAQs, market research assistance and other export related services.

Maine International Trade Center — Resources for Maine businesses looking to access international markets.

Port of Eastport — The nation’s easternmost deep-water port is located in Eastport, Maine. Learn more about the Port of Eastport and how it can benefit your business.

TradePort — A collection of trade resources including export and import guides, country portfolios, and a trade library with reports and resources.

World Trade Web Resources — Directory of worldwide international trade resources

Finance your business

SCEC has compiled a PDF guide of the  Public Sources of Commercial Financing & Technical Assistance for Washington County Businesses. You can also browse our links to sources of financing and helpful financing calculators.

Sources of Financing  — Searchable database of commercial funding sources; FAQs, how to guides, and do-it-yourself workbooks are also available.

Finance Authority of Maine: Business Assistance — Financing options and assistance for Maine-based businesses.

Maine Small Business Development Centers — Info, guides and sources of financing a small business in Maine. Maine SBDC also provides technical assistance and counseling to area businesses.

SBA: Loan Programs — A guide to financing your new or existing business.

USDA Rural Development Business & Energy Programs — A listing of programs for Maine-based businesses through the state’s division of USDA Rural Development.

Financial Planning Tools

Business and financial calculators can help position you for success, whether you’re looking to get a handle on your company’s finances, grow your business or understand your bottom line.

These calculators are no substitute for sound, financial planning and should not be taken as such. For a full description of each (including limits and restrictions) please click on the desired link.

Navigate the ins and outs of self-employment

In 2010, 10.3% of employed Maine residents were self-employed, well above the national average (Maine Department of Labor, August 2011).

In Maine, half of those self-employed are in the farming, fishing, forestry and logging industries. Twenty-five percent are in the construction industry while professional and business services and educational and health care services account for another 25 percent.

If you are currently self-employed or are thinking about going into business, these resources can help you navigate the ins and outs of entrepreneurship.

University of Maine School of Economics — Research on Maine’s economy including publications on micro-business ownership, the fishing sector, and macro-economics and how it relates to business an community development.

Business Week: Small Business  — News and information for the small business owner from one of the nation’s leading business publications. Site features blogs, videos, and articles on business and the economy.

Home Based Business Network — A social network for self-employed and home based business owners.

Idea Cafe  — All purpose business info center with guides, articles, pointers and general self-employment information of all kinds.

Institute for Family Owned Business  — Features programs and business support resources for the Maine- based family owned business.

Maine Gov. Business — One stop for Maine businesses looking for general business-related information.

Maine Chamber of Commerce — Business information and resources from across Maine. — Business and market plan templates, tutorials, weekly articles and help guides by and for entrepreneurs.

National Association for the Self Employed — Benefit plans, advice and assistance for the self-employed and small business.

National Federation of Independent Businesses — News, opinion, advocacy, tools and help guides for the micro-entrepreneur.

Open Directory’s Home Office –– Yahoo! style directory listings for home-based business help guides, miscellaneous resources, and a section designed for work-at-home parents.

Small Business Wiki — Small-business articles and information updated and edited by users from across the globe.

Explore tourism-based business opportunities

Maine’s beauty and its natural resources make the state the ideal place to start a tourism-based business. Nowhere is this more evident than in Washington County, where visitors flock to its picturesque coastlines, unspoiled woodlands, and quaint New England villages. If you are thinking of starting a tourism-based business, the following resources can steer you in the right direction.

Downeast & Acadia Regional Tourism (DART) — Information and tourism related resources for coastal Washington and Hancock counties.

Downeast Fisheries Trail — An interpretive trail through Washington and Hancock counties which highlights Downeast Maine’s fishing heritage.

Maine Ice Age Trail–The Maine Ice Age Trail leads through one of the finest and most accessible areas of glacial moraines, deltas and eskers.

Downeast Sunrise Trail  — All purpose scenic/recreational trail from Ayers Junction to Washington Junction.

Maine Innkeepers Association  — Trade organization for Maine innkeepers.

Maine Professional Guides Association  — Learn about and/or join the Maine Professional Guides Association.

Maine Restaurant Association  — Trade organization for Maine restaurant owners.

Maine Tourism Association: Downeast & Acadia — Search for lodging, dining, vacation spots in Washington and Hancock counties.

Maine Office of Tourism Directory  — Index of tourism related businesses in Maine. Search for places to stay, eat, and visit, or for things to do while you’re here. Search by town or by region. List your tourism-based business for free.

The Bold Coast Scenic Byway — Learn about the Bold Coast Scenic Byway.

Hiking the Bold Coast-– The Bold Coast is a scenic natural area of spruce-fir forest, peat bogs, dynamic rocky cliffs, and cobble beaches fronting the Bay of Fundy in eastern Washington County, Maine.

Maneuver through the legal system

Stay ahead of the tax man by knowing your rights and responsibilities when it comes to sales, income and property taxes for businesses.

Business Town: Taxes — Articles, resources and other business tax-related information on a variety of topics.

GovSpot Tax Center — Tax info clearinghouse; forms, federal and state links, articles, FAQs and help guides.

Internal Revenue Service — Quick, easy-to-find tax law, forms, and general information for businesses.

Maine Revenue Service — Tax code, forms and resources for Maine businesses and individuals.

Maine Tax Forms — State tax forms and publications.

Manage sales, income and property taxes

Business Town: Taxes — Articles, resources and other business tax-related information on a variety of topics.

GovSpot Tax Center — Tax info clearinghouse; forms, federal and state links, articles, FAQs and help guides.

Internal Revenue Service — Quick, easy-to-find tax law, forms, and general information for businesses.

Maine Revenue Service — Tax code, forms and resources for Maine businesses and individuals.

Maine Tax Forms — State tax forms and publications.

Consult with business development professionals

Sometimes you need to speak with someone about your ideas. The following are resources for current or future business owners in Washington County.

Sunrise County Economic Council
Business & economic development related services for Washington County businesspeople. SCEC is open Monday through Friday with offices in Calais and Machias. Please call or email us in for an appointment.

Katie Bragg
Sunrise County Economic Council
MaineStreet Business Building
Director of Small Business & Entrepreneurship
19 Main St., Machias, ME 04654

Coastal Enterprises Inc. Women’s Business Center — Business counseling for start-ups and existing businesses, provides workshops and training to all, with a focus on support for women entrepreneurs. Available by appointment.

Ruth Feldman, Business Advisor

CEI Women’s Business Center
7 Ames Way (at SCEC)
Machias, ME 04654
207-241-5592 office

Northern Maine Development Commission — Business advice and counseling for Aroostook and Washington counties; available by appointment.

Judy Dinsmore
Executive Coordinator
Northern Maine Development Commission
11 West Presque Isle Road
PO Box 779
Caribou, ME 04736

University of Maine Cooperative Extension — Washington County business counseling and training. Workshops are also available.

Washington County UT TIF Program — Washington County’s TIF district was created to capture tax monies generated by the Stetson I and Stetson II wind farms located in the unorganized territories near Danforth. This arrangement will make funds available for grants and loans to people and organizations who want to create and expand businesses and other opportunities in any of the unorganized territories of Washington County, Maine.

Susan Hatton
Program Manager
Sunrise County Economic Council
7 Ames Way
Machias, ME 04654

330 North St.
Calais, ME 04619
Phone: 207-255-0983

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