Best Small Business Resources in the Milwaukee Area

Starting a business is a life-changing experience. Wisconsin has dozens of great resources to help entrepreneurs get started. Our team researched and vetted organizations in the Milwaukee area and compiled our list of recommended resources in this article.

You can also read our guide to starting a business in Wisconsin.


Resources Available in your Area


BizStarts

Here are the Principle Service Areas:

  • Mentoring
  • Networking

Offers Free Service

Description

BizStarts is an entrepreneurial hub located in Milwaukee and servicing southeast Wisconsin. They offer one-on-one mentoring, market assessments, and other startup services that work to bolster the local entrepreneurial community. Beyond in-person assistance, their website also provides a wealth of information and lists of small business resources in Wisconsin.

CONTACT INFORMATION:

1555 N. River Center Drive , Suite 210
Milwaukee, WI 53212
414-973-2334


707 Hub

Here are the Principle Service Areas:

  • Business Planning
  • Networking

Description

707 Hub is run by Marquette University and offers reverse pitch competitions, collaborative work environments, and other programs exclusively for students. Programs open to the public include a bootcamp for social entrepreneurs and a pitch competition called Rev-Up MKE. Rev-Up MKE is a competition where startups receive coaching and mentoring to prepare them for a pitch competition. The winning company receives significant assistance to help launch their business.

Restrictions

Some programs are restricted to students only.

CONTACT INFORMATION:

1102 W. Wisconsin Ave., First Floor
Milwaukee, WI 53233
414-288-7250
707hub@marquette.edu


Milwaukee Public Library

Here are the Principle Service Areas:

  • Research

Offers Free Service

Accepts Walks In

Description

Milwaukee’s public library offers a lot of free information for aspiring entrepreneurs, including research databases, workshops, and meeting rooms. This library has several amenities that make it stand out from others, notably, members have the option to “book a librarian” who will guide you through all of the library’s small business resources. Another great amenity is a series of workshops and classes on patent research and small business resources. Meeting rooms can be reserved for private meetings of up to roughly a dozen people, larger event spaces are also available.

Restrictions

A library membership may be required to access certain amenities. Membership requires residency in Milwaukee County.

CONTACT INFORMATION:

814 W. Wisconsin Ave
Milwaukee, WI 53233
414-286-3000

HOURS OF OPERATION:

Mon 12-8

Tue 9-8

Wed 9-6

THU: 9 am - 6 pm

FRI: 9 am - 6 pm

SAT: 9 am - 5 pm

SUN: 1 am - 5 pm 


Milwaukee SCORE

Here are the Principle Service Areas:

  • Mentoring
  • Business Planning
  • Sales & Marketing
  • Networking

Offers Free Service

Description

SCORE (Service Corp of Retired Executives) is a leading, nation-wide organization that has assisted millions of entrepreneurs over its 50+ years of operation. SCORE is a resource partner of the SBA that offers access to a network of experienced business leaders who donate time to mentor entrepreneurs and small business owners. They also host free or inexpensive workshops online and at 300 local chapters around the United States. Mentoring can be conducted either in person or remotely and is always free and confidential, no matter how often you take advantage of this service.


Startup Milwaukee

Here are the Principle Service Areas:

  • Mentoring
  • Networking

Description

Startup Milwaukee hosts a variety of programs to assist local entrepreneurs and help nurture startups and spur innovation. Emerge is a program that lets startups pitch ideas to a group of local entrepreneurs, receiving feedback and support. Reverse Pitch MKE is a unique program where corporate executives pitch problems to local entrepreneurs, and then several months later, the entrepreneurs pitch solutions back to the executives and promising ideas are rewarded with seed funding. They also host a startup week and a mentorship program.


The Hive

Here are the Principle Service Areas:

  • Coworking

Description

The Hive is a coworking space in downtown Milwaukee, offering plenty of amenities in a vibrantly decorated community space. Membership plans range from daily passes to private offices. Amenities include a conference room, 24/7 access, and whiteboards.

CONTACT INFORMATION:

720 N Milwaukee St.
​Milwaukee, WI 53202
262-949-6903
info@thehivemke.com


Ward4 Coworking

Here are the Principle Service Areas:

  • Coworking
  • Networking

Offers Free Service

Description

Ward4 is a coworking space just across the river from the Third Ward, near the Milwaukee Public Market. Their membership packages are simple and reasonable: desk access or private offices. Ward 4 emphasizes trust among members: there are no limited guest visits or conference room credits, everything is included with the membership. The space boasts fast wifi, printing, 24/7 access, and (soon) a private parking structure. Ward4 also promotes its Women’s Entrepreneurship Week, where women-focused events are hosted and women entrepreneurs can receive free coworking space.

CONTACT INFORMATION:

313 North Plankton Avenue
Milwaukee, WI 53203
414-333-5516
kenzi@ward4mke.com


Wisconsin SBDC at UW-Milwaukee

Here are the Principle Service Areas:

  • Mentoring
  • Business Planning
  • Financial

Offers Free Service

Description

The greatest strength of the SBDC is their free, confidential, 1-on-1 business mentoring for anyone who seeks it. Sometimes in order to be considered for mentoring from one of their professional business advisors, you may have to attend a class/workshop or at least present your business plan. SBDC's are located all throughout the state and you should use the SBDC closest to your location if possible, but you can often transfer to a different location if they do not fit your needs.

CONTACT INFORMATION:

161 W. Wisconsin Ave, Ste 6000
Milwaukee, WI 53203


Wisconsin Women's Business Initiative Corporation

Here are the Principle Service Areas:

  • Mentoring
  • Business Planning
  • Fundraising
  • Networking

Description

Women's Business Centers are nationwide programs established by the SBA to assist women in starting small businesses. Some of these centers are combined with other local organizations and use that relationship to offer even more services. Each Women's Business Center has counselors who can provide mentorship and assistance with business planning. Women’s Business Centers also provide a network of other businesses, and some have loan programs available

Restrictions

The Women's Business Centers are, as the name implies, meant for women primarily.

CONTACT INFORMATION:

1533 N. Rivercenter Drive
Milwaukee, WI 53212
414-263-5450