Welcome to the Economic Development Department's Business Brief! We are continuing to ensure you are updated on the latest business resources and news.


New This Issue!

All Ready Here Long Beach Site Selectors Conference

All Ready Here is an unprecedented opportunity for business leaders, policy makers, and global location specialists to come together, connect, share insights, and identify opportunities to accelerate the economic growth for the City of Long Beach.

This inaugural Site Selector Conference provides Site Selector Guild members with the opportunity to explore why there has never been a better time to invest in Long Beach. With a business-friendly city administration, burgeoning tech scene, an expanding aviation and aerospace industry, and unprecedented coastal development opportunities, Long Beach is ready and open for business.

2024 Career and Health Job Fair

Harbor Occupational Center is now recruiting employers for the 2024 Career and Health Fair! The 2024 Career and Health Fair will take place on Thursday, March 21, 2024. If you are an interested employer, you may access the Employer Registration Form.

Sidewalk to Success Program Webinar

The City of Long Beach is hosting a community webinar today, March 15, 2024, to provide education and guidance to aspiring entrepreneurs, existing vendors and community stakeholders interested in learning more about the City’s new sidewalk vending ordinance and recently-launched Sidewalk to Success program and other supportive services.


The meeting will take place via Zoom and include a presentation followed by Q&A. Interpretation services in Spanish, Khmer and Tagalog will be available during the meeting.


This is the first of several public meetings to be held in effort to educate the community about the ordinance. Information presented will help prepare and guide local entrepreneurs to their success in operating a sidewalk vending business in Long Beach.

Verizon Small Business Digital Ready Grant

National ACE has teamed up with Verizon to deliver personalized tools for small businesses like yours to succeed in today's digital world. Learning modules, expert coaching, peer networking, and more—it's all here, and it’s all part of our goal to provide resources to help one million small businesses thrive in the digital economy. Register now for our free online curriculum and move your business forward.


To unlock this grant application, you must have an account on Verizon Small Business Digital Ready and complete any combination of two courses, coaching events, and virtual community events between January 1st, 2024, and April 8th, 2024, and submit a grant application by April 8th, 2024. For example, you can unlock the application by completing one course and one coaching event, or one course and one virtual community event, or two courses, or two events.

Main Street America's Backing Small Businesses Grant

In partnership with American Express, the Backing Small Businesses grant program supports economically vulnerable and under-resourced small businesses with community reach. This year, eligible small business owners can apply for $10,000 grants for projects that grow or improve their businesses by building community, supporting their economic viability, or bolstering meaningful change.


Applications will be accepted from 9:00 am CT on March 14, 2024, through 11:59 pm CT on April 7, 2024. The application period will end once 5,000 applications have been submitted, even if that occurs before the deadline. 

National Trust for Historic Preservation's Backing Historic Small Restaurants Grant

The Backing Historic Small Restaurants program, presented by American Express in partnership with the National Trust for Historic Preservation, will award a total of $2.5 million in grants ($50,000 each) to 50 historic and culturally significant restaurants in the United States. This program seeks to assist a broad array of restaurants that have contributed to their neighborhood’s history and identity and that help tell a diverse story about cuisine and community in America. Access the application website to learn more about the 2024 Backing Historic Small Restaurants grant.

In Case You Missed It

City of Long Beach Launches Sidewalk to Success Program to Support Business Development

The City of Long Beach, through the Long Beach Recovery Act, is funding a sidewalk vending support program, “Sidewalk to Success,” to help ease the financial burden for small businesses in the first year of the City’s recently approved Sidewalk Vending Ordinance that went into effect Monday, February 26, 2024.


The City Council approved the development of a sidewalk vending support program to cover the costs of the required business license and health permit fees for operating in the first year and provide reimbursements for the first year of insurance costs. Under the Sidewalk to Success Program, all costs will be covered at the time of the application, with the exception of insurance costs, which will be covered through a reimbursement process for an amount not to exceed $450. A second phase of the program is being developed that will provide up to 40 free food vending carts to sidewalk vendors who apply and meet eligibility requirements; actual carts available will depend on the type of carts and program participation. Details on eligibility and how to apply will be shared later this summer once established. 


More information about the program, including how to apply for a sidewalk vendors business license and how to obtain a health permit from the Long Beach Health Department, is available at longbeach.gov/sidewalkvending.

Celebrate Women's History Month by Shopping at Local Small Businesses

Celebrate and join the Shop Long Beach Women’s History Month Program through the Shop Long Beach program!


Empowerment, innovation, and leadership are at the heart of these enterprises, and your patronage helps to amplify their voices and contributions in our communities. From startups to established brands, let's champion female entrepreneurs and their remarkable achievements. Together, let's make a difference by choosing to shop consciously and inclusively this Women's History Month and beyond.


Through this promotion, you will receive an additional 10% back in LocalCash rewards when you shop at these Shop Long Beach women-owned businesses during March. If you are not already registered as a Shop Long Beach consumer or would like to learn more about the Shop Long Beach rewards program, please visit: shoplb.org.

Visit the Shop Long Beach website!

Upcoming Events and Workshops

SBDC: What You Need to Know About Insurance for Your Small Business

  • March 18, 2024, 3 pm

SBDC: Business Finance Literacy Series [Session 3 of 3] How to Analyze your Company's Financials for Better Decision Making

  • March 19, 2024, 9 am

PACE: Unlock Success: Master Business Financing and Lending Strategies

  • March 19, 2024, 10 am

Small Business Majority: Verizon Small Business Workshop

  • March 19, 2024, 11 am

SCORE: Mastering Credit Repair- A guide to Improve your Credit Score

  • March 19,2024, 1:00pm

PACE: Available Grants for Business Owners

  • March 19, 2024, 1 pm

SCORE: Mastering Credit Repair- A guide to Improve your Credit Score

  • March 19,2024, 1:00pm

LAEDC: Webinar: Unlocking AI for Small Businesses

  • March 20, 2024, 11 am

PACE: Bank of America - Small Business Finances Webinar Series: How to Obtain Business Loans in Today's Environment

  • March 20, 2024, 1 pm

LAEDC: Webinar: No Cost Resources for Your Business

  • March 21, 2024, 11 am

Small Business Majority: Small Business Guide Series: Retirement Plans

  • March 21, 2024, 12 pm

SBDC: Developing An Actionable Business Plan

  • March 21, 2024, 1 pm

SCORE : Google My Business - How to Get Your Business on Google Search and Maps

  • March 21, 2024, 1:00pm

PACE: Accounting for Business Owners

  • March 22, 2024, 10 am

Small Business Majority: The Art of Success: Crafting Your Business Future with Strategic Goals

  • March 22, 2024, 12 pm

SCORE : Grow Your Sales by Getting Higher-Paying Clients

  • March 26, 2024, 1:00pm

Access to Capital Options x Hollywood JEDI

  • March 26, 2024, 4 pm

PACE: Financial Bootcamp for Small Business Owners Series II: Financial Forecasting and Growth Planning for Small Business

  • March 26, 2024, 10 am

PACE: Bank of America - Small Business Finances Webinar Series: Alternative Financing Options for Small Business

  • March 27, 2024, 1 pm

SCORE: How to Use Sales Funnels & Marketing Automation to Grow Your Business

  • March 28, 2024, 1:00pm

Port of Long Beach New Office Hours for Small Businesses

The Port of Long Beach kicks off new “drop-in” office hours for small and diverse business enterprises seeking assistance with potential contracting opportunities at the Port.


The Port of Long Beach is proud to announce office hours on Wednesdays from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. for small and diverse businesses looking to explore contracting opportunities at the Port, or requesting assistance with small business enterprise or disadvantaged business enterprise opportunities. Office hours will occur at the Port of Long Beach Administration Building on the first floor, located at 415 West Ocean Boulevard, Long Beach, CA.


Business Insights Tool

The City of Long Beach continues to expand its innovative business resources with the launch of its Business Insights Tool, a new, free online resource for local businesses that makes big data accessible for small businesses, allowing them to benchmark performance, optimize marketing, and analyze competitors, suppliers, and underserved markets. The Business Insights tool is now available for entrepreneurs and businesses at longbeach.gov/businessinsights.

Visual Improvement Program (VIP) Grant

The Visual Improvement Program (VIP) Grant is providing direct financial relief to local small businesses and nonprofits impacted by crime and vandalism on or after 10/1/2022. Eligible businesses can receive $1,500 to cover repairs to their storefront caused by vandalism. To find more information and access the online application visit longbeach.gov/smallbizgrants.

Inclusive Business Navigators Program

The City of Long Beach launched the Inclusive Business Navigators Program to provide outreach, workshops, education, and direct technical assistance for local small businesses and nonprofits to support their economic recovery from financial hardships and disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The City previously sought partners to administer the Inclusive Business Navigators Program to support equitable economic recovery for Long Beach small businesses and nonprofits. The City selected vendors including CentroCHA, UCC, April Parker, and RightSource Services to provide outreach and assistance to local businesses. More information on these vendors and assistance available can be found at longbeach.gov/biznavigators. Businesses can also access assistance through this program through the BizCare Hotline: 562.570.4249 or 4Biz@longbeach.gov.

Pacific Gateway Work Experience Program

Looking for an opportunity to make a positive impact while also benefiting your business? Consider partnering with Pacific Gateway Workforce Innovation Network, the City's workforce agency. Pacific Gateway is seeking employers who can provide work experience opportunities to individuals with limited experience.  


By hosting a temporary worker through Pacific Gateway, you'll provide meaningful work experience to shape their professional growth. Pacific Gateway will serve as the employer on record and pay the worker's wages.

For more information about the Work Experience program or additional questions, please contact Sokko Kong at Sokko.Kong@pacific-gateway.org or 562-570-3728. 

Register Today!

Commercial Corridor Façade Improvement Program

The Commercial Corridor Façade Improvement Program (CCFIP) will provide financial assistance in the form of a grant to commercial property owners to significantly improve the appearance of the entire façade of their property that is visible from the street.

Visit the program webpage for more information and eligibility requirements.

Free Digital Marketing with CSULB

Whether you are looking to create digital marketing assets for the first time or you need to level up your current efforts, CSULB is here to help your small business grow! This program will work with CSULB students enrolled in Marketing 437: Digital Marketing and Media to create customized digital marketing materials to boost your business for free. Students will assist in creating marketing material such as website creation, email marketing, and social media marketing.

Apply Here

Long Beach Public Library Digital Library

Take your business to the next level with free online courses, entrepreneurship training, and marketing tools from the Digital Library. Offering notable and distinguished resources such as Coursera, Udemy, and LinkedIn Learning, the Digital Library contains an invaluable wealth of knowledge to help business owners (and their employees) upskill and lead a successful business. The Digital Library is free for all LBPL cardholders. Sign up for a library card to access these Digital Library Resource. 

Certified Blue Restaurant Program

The Certified Blue Restaurant (CBR) program supports and recognizes the outstanding Long Beach restaurants that achieve exceptional water efficiency in our community. Interested restaurants can enroll below to receive a no-cost, on-site efficiency survey, free water-efficient devices (if eligible), and an assessment for other possible rebates. Enroll your restaurant for the Certified Blue Restaurant Program.

Are you a small business looking for new opportunities?

Every year, the Port of Long Beach needs small businesses to partner with, to build, maintain, and service the 2nd largest Port in the United States. Small businesses earn millions of dollars as primes and/or sub-contractors on Port contracts.


Small business opportunities are available for a variety of contract types, such as construction, supplies, landscaping, recycling services, technology hardware, software, and even food services. Visit the Port’s Business Opportunities Overview webpage to download a sampling of products/services procured by each Port division.


Port of Long Beach Small Business Enterprise / Very Small Business Enterprise (VSBE) Program


The main goal of the SBE/VSBE Program is to promote the participation of SBEs and VSBEs on Port contracts and procurements, via prime and subcontracting opportunities. The Port has a 27% annual department-wide goal which is achieved by setting minimum SBE and VSBE participation goals for applicable construction and professional services contracts, and bureau-wide and/or division-wide SBE/VSBE goals on applicable purchases. Learn more about the Port’s SBE/VSBE Program at polb.com/sbe.

Long Beach Procurement Platform "Long Beach Buys"

The City of Long Beach has launched Long Beach Buys, a new purchasing platform and marketplace that is free for all businesses and organizations seeking to do business with the City. Long Beach Buys is part of the City’s Extreme Procurement Makeover initiative, which aims to enhance the City’s procurement process to be more efficient, results-driven, equitable, and sustainable.

Long Beach Resource Line

Contact the City of Long Beach BizCare Hotline for Immediate Assistance:

Phone number: 562-570-4BIZ (4249)

Days: Monday - Friday

Hours: 8:00 a.m. to 5 p.m.

City staff will respond to voicemails made after business hours within 24 hours.

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