Small Business

The most effective development strategy for rural communities is small entrepreneurship – locally owned and operated small businesses.

You have a great idea for a new small business. Congratulations! That's the first step. Here are some other ideas and information to consider on your journey to success.

Small Business Programs
Several programs are available to help businesses to become established and grow. Our own Rural Enterprise Assistance Project provides trains, technical assistance, and small loans for entrepreneurs in Nebraska.  

Small Business Notes


Rural Enterprise Reporter 2015: REAP's Annual Report

Another Great Year of Business Development Services for Rural Entrepreneurs

Fiscal Year 2015 was a record-setting year for REAP. We worked with large numbers of startup and existing entrepreneurs throughout Nebraska, placed and leveraged over $2.9 million in loans, and reached significant numbers of women and Latino entrepreneurs. The need for REAP services is at an all-time high. It speaks to the massive demand for services in Nebraska and our ability and capacity to produce results.

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REAP Achieves Top 10 Position in National Lending

The Center for Rural Affairs’ small business development program, REAP, ranked #7 in the United States for the number of Small Business Administration Micro loans placed. REAP was #21 for the dollar value of Micro loans closed.

The ranking was done by the SBA’s Office of Economic Opportunity at the close of fiscal year 2015, just completed. Here's what Jeff Reynolds, REAP director, had to say about the accomplishment (heads-up, Jeff is a big sports fan!):

Ric Camacho Turned Tough Times into a Successful Business

The year was 2009 and as always, history seemed to repeat itself. This was evident to Ric Camacho Sr; just a year before he was employed by a large construction and mechanical firm. He worked for a company that was now busy eliminating departments and reducing jobs, including his. Ric worked in the mechanical division of the company, leading the plumbing, HVAC and sheet metal fabrication departments.