Having one of the most diverse terrains in the country, New Mexico is a beautiful and scenic state located southwest of the U.S. The state is a melting pot of rich cultural heritage, mainly influenced by the Spanish colonial era.
Although ranked by Forbes Magazine in 2015 as 47th (bottom 6 overall for 3rd straight year) in the best states for business, in recent years, New Mexico’s economy showed steady progress and improvement.
In a survey conducted by Thumbtack on nearly 8,000 businesses in 2015, New Mexico ranked 29th in overall business friendliness. In terms of ease when starting a business, New Mexico is ranked four. You can easily build your new startup here without any glitches. However, businesses in the state are highly regulated, employment, labor and hiring are closely monitored and licensing regulations are strict. So be sure to do your homework.
If you’re ready to sail the waters of New Mexico’s business climate, here are top resources that can help you!
WOMEN’S ECONOMIC SELF SUFFICIENCY TEAM (WESST)
The Women’s Economic Self Sufficiency Team or WESST is a statewide organization that aims to develop and train businesses within the state to grow New Mexico’s economy through entrepreneurship. The organization works hard to assist professionals and entrepreneurs alike to realize their dreams and bring about economic progress. WESST provides business training, business consulting and business resources and makes available business loans, a business incubator and a digital studio for aspiring entrepreneurs.
SBDC – NEW MEXICO
In cooperation with the U.S. Small Business Administration, the Small Business Development Center provides hundreds of assistance programs for new businesses to enhance New Mexico’s economy. The organization offers online training and workshops and events to develop the entrepreneurial spirit of business owners within the state. Whether you’re a startup or an existing business, you can benefit from SBDC’s resources and partners.
STARTUP NEW MEXICO
Startup New Mexico together with Startup America is a joint effort to establish New Mexico as an economic force in the region. It encourages entrepreneurs to build and grow their business within the state, determine core business problems and needs and create effective and timely solutions to help entrepreneur thrive in New Mexico. Startup New Mexico focuses on the following areas: leadership, talent, network density and access to capital or financing.
NEW MEXICO BLACK CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
The New Mexico Black Chamber of Commerce is dedicated to serve the state’s business community regardless of race and color. However, the organization focuses its attention on minority owned startups by increasing their chances, providing them with opportunities and ensuring the increase of jobs in New Mexico.
STARTUP SANTA FE
Startup Santa Fe is both a public and private partnership between the City of Santa Fe and Creative Santa Fe. The main goal of the partnership is to create accessible entrepreneurial resources across New Mexico. Startup Santa Fe will connect you with the right people to make your vision a reality.
ALBUQUERQUE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
Albuquerque Economic Development is a government initiated agency that provides startup assistance to entrepreneurs who are planning to build and relocate their business within the state. The agency also helps you connect with the right talent, the right strategic partners and the right financial assistance program to help you build your dream business.
LOS AMOS COMMERCE AND DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION
The Los Amos Commerce and Development Corporation is a non-profit organization that uses the investments made by the public and private sector inorder to accomplish sustainable economic progress. The agency executes this plan by offering businesses a portfolio consisting of a wide range of programs and initiatives.
NEW MEXICO STATE UNIVERSITY – SBDC
New Mexico State University in partnership with the SBDC is a government initiated program dedicated to providing small businesses with direct assistance, business education and numerous resources and links to strengthen the economy of the state. New Mexico State University provides free business management consulting, mentoring and training courses and procurement assistance.
NEW MEXICO ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT DEPARTMENT
The New Mexico Economic Development Department is a direct initiative of Governor Susana Martinez, governor of New Mexico and Secretary Jon Barela of Economic Development. The primary goal of the program is to improve, expand and maintain existing businesses within the state. Entrepreneurs can ask assistance anytime by filling out a customized assistance request form.
The Service Corps of Retired Executives (SCORE) is an organization that aims to provide business owners and entrepreneurs with guidance through one-on-one business consultations, mentoring, coaching and business assistance. The organization has many professional volunteers who are highly qualified and experienced to give you the assistance that you need. With the main goal to educate new entrepreneurs, SCORE executes these programs efficiently to aid in economic development.
The U.S. Small Business Administration is a government agency and one of the largest providers of small business resources and assistance in the entire county. The goal of the department is to fully support small businesses across the country by making available local assistance programs, loans and business grants, business management trainings and seminars and a lot more.
FINANCE NEW MEXICO
Finance New Mexico is a public initiated program that enables entrepreneurs to connect to the right resources for their business to grow and thrive. Backed by both the public and private sector, Finance New Mexico gives entrepreneurs access to the best business building tools and connections. Through its business assistance program, you’ll be able to find low cost consultants, business mentors and the appropriate information to build your business.
THE LOAN FUND
The Loan Fund is a non-profit organization that offers loans as well as other business assistance such as business consultations and training services for entrepreneurs and small businesses across New Mexico. The organization specifically caters to those who cannot obtain funding through traditional means such as banks and credit unions.
TECHNOLOGY VENTURES CORPORATION
Technology Ventures Corporation is a non-profit, charitable foundation that aims to create jobs, assist in business formation and provide equity funding to aspiring entrepreneurs in New Mexico. The organization helps in transforming ideas into a tangible business, hone entrepreneurial talents and skills, but most of all, they will secure the right investment specific to the kind of business an entrepreneur wants to build.
Century Bank is a private financial firm that provides funding resources for businesses of all size. The goal of the bank is to help entrepreneurs grow and expand their business to success. They have local commercial lenders who are willing to finance viable business ventures in New Mexico. Some of the available financing options at Century Bank include working capital, lines of credit, SBA and government enhanced loans and many others.
SANTA FE BUSINESS INCUBATOR
The Santa Fe Business Incubator is a non-profit economic development organization that helps local business owners and entrepreneurs start and build successful businesses. It aims to fully assist entrepreneurs by providing services such as short-term leases, an office building and a wide range of entrepreneurial support services such as networking events, access to numerous federal and state resources, seminars, trainings and workshops and free business and technical assistance.
NMSBA – LOS ALAMOS NATIONAL LABORATORY
The NMSBA program enables New Mexico small business owners who are experiencing difficulties while starting their ventures to gain access to the assistance and expertise of the Los Amos and Sandia National Laboratory. Business assistance is provided for free and entrepreneurs can ask for help from lab scientists and engineers for ventures that need testing and design as well as the use of special facilities and technology.
FatPipe ABQ is a collaborative and coworking space that brings startups and existing businesses together to create a unique and dynamic environment where new ideas are nurtured to thrive. With its state-of-the-art and modern facilities, like-minded professionals are able to develop their ideas and turn them into innovative businesses and ventures.
NM Partnership is a program of the New Mexico Economic Development Department. It is a one stop shop for locating the right resources as well as business incubators in New Mexico. The program has provided numerous options for entrepreneurs who are looking for the perfect business incubator for their new venture. NM Partnership also has available support for incentives, workforce training programs and real estate sites and buildings.
SOUTH VALLEY ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT CENTER
The South Valley Economic Development Center is a business incubator that provides state-of-the-art facilities, up-to-date resources and numerous training and mentorship programs that will enable entrepreneurs to grow and expand their small businesses in South Valley as well as New Mexico as a whole.
ARROWHEAD CENTER AT NEW MEXICO STATE UNIVERSITY
The Arrowhead Center situated at New Mexico State University brings together professionals, entrepreneurs and researchers to formulate solutions to market problems and take advantage of the use of market opportunities. Arrowhead Center supports the commercialization of technology unveiled by researchers as well as assisting entrepreneurs explore the business market and monetize new solutions.
ABQid is a short-term business accelerator program that spans 12 weeks. The program was made based on the Techstars accelerator curriculum. Small businesses and startups that are admitted to the program are given $20,000 for an equity of 6%. Financing is also given by the City of Albuquerque.
Creative Startups is a virtual accelerator program that targets the creative economy in New Mexico. It has a curriculum which is design based on thinking concepts and the lean startup technique. Startups are aligned with mentors and everything is done virtually. These startups meet for an intensive 5-day boot camp and more.