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Startup in a Day

Learn about the Startup in a Day Prize Competitions
Find out how to take the Startup in a Day Pledge

The Startup in a Day initiative aims to make it easier for entrepreneurs to start a business by reducing the amount of time it takes to register and apply for permits and licenses on the local level.  Cities and Native American communities across the United States are encouraged to get involved.

Startup in a Day Competition

The SBA conducted two prize competitions for U.S. cities and Native American communities. Both competitions awarded prizes to support the development, implementation, and improvement of online tools that let entrepreneurs learn about the business startup process in their area, including how to register and apply for all required local licenses and permits, in one day or less.

Startup in a Day Competition – Start Small Model: The first competition awarded 25 prizes of $50,000 each to cities.  Two (2) additional prizes of $50,000 each were awarded specifically to Native American communities.

Startup in a Day Competition – Dream Big Model: The second competition challenged cities and Native American communities to develop an “open source” Startup in a Day solution, which could be replicable and scalable to other localities. One (1) $250,000 prize was awarded.

Startup in a Day Winners

The SBA is proud to announce the winners of the Startup in a Day prize competitions. Congratulations!

Start Small Model Prizes:

  • Anchorage, Alaska
  • Asheville, North Carolina
  • Atlanta, Georgia
  • Austin, Texas
  • Boise, Idaho
  • Boston, Massachusetts
  • Brookings, South Dakota
  • Burlington, Vermont
  • Champaign, Illinois
  • Jackson, Michigan
  • Long Beach, California
  • Memphis, Tennessee
  • Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • Oakland, California
  • Peoria, Illinois
  • Riverside, California
  • Rockland, Maine
  • Rocky Mount, North Carolina
  • Rutland City, Vermont
  • Salt Lake City, Utah
  • San Francisco, California
  • Seattle, Washington
  • St. Louis, Missouri
  • Washington, District of Columbia
  • Wilmington, Delaware

Native American Start Small Model Prizes:

  • Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation
  • Choctaw Nation

Dream Big Model Prize:

  • Los Angeles, California

Startup in a Day Pledge

President Barack Obama continues to ask cities and Native American communities across America to take the Startup in a Day Pledge to support entrepreneurs. Several cities have already taken the pledge. 

For information on how your city or Native American community can take the pledge, please email startup@sba.gov.

The Pledge...

“Our cities and communities are committed to making it easier for every entrepreneur to start a business. We believe an entrepreneur’s time is best spent developing innovative products and services, creating jobs, and growing local economies—not navigating red tape. While fair zoning rules, licenses, and permits are important to ensuring public safety and fair competition, it should not take more than a day for an entrepreneur to identify and apply, ideally through a single online tool, for all the licenses and permits they need in order to responsibly launch a business. Accordingly, we resolve to:

  1. Create a “Startup in a Day” online tool within 12 months: we will develop within a year a website or application that lets most entrepreneurs identify and apply within one day for all requirements to launch a business in our respective communities.

  2. Develop a streamlined, business-friendly, online permitting system: Our pledge is a first step in a larger effort to streamline, simplify, and bring online those regulatory requirements that have traditionally been fragmented across multiple agencies and handled through a paper-based process. Our ultimate goal is for small business owners to be able to manage and complete most of their regulatory obligations within a single easy-to-use online system.

  3. Share best practices: In an effort to encourage other municipalities to join us in this effort, we are joining a community of practice administered by the National League of Cities, and commit to sharing best practices, publicizing key learnings, highlighting tangible outcomes, supporting smart regulatory simplification, and providing visibility into our actions.”

Startup in a Day Pledge Commitments...

The following cities have pledged to make the startup process easier for entrepreneurs:

•    Albany, NY
•    Anchorage, AK
•    Ann Arbor, MI
•    Asheville, NC
•    Atlanta, GA
•    Austin, TX
•    Bayamon, PR
•    Boise, ID
•    Boston, MA
•    Bridgeport, CT
•    Brookings, SD
•    Bryant, AR
•    Burlington, VT
•    Butte, MT
•    Charlotte, NC
•    Chattanooga, TN
•    Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation
•    Choctaw Nation
•    Cincinnati, OH
•    Dayton, OH
•    Denver, CO
•    Detroit, MI
•    Flint, MI
•    Fresno, CA
•    Grand Forks, ND
•    Groton, CT
•    Indianapolis, IN
•    Jackson, MI
•    Jersey City, NJ
•    Joplin, MO
•    Kansas City, KS
•    Kansas City, MO
•    Las Vegas, NV
•    Little Rock, AR
•    Long Beach, CA
•    Los Angeles, CA

•    Louisville, KY
•    Martinsville, VA
•    Memphis, TN
•    Milwaukee, WI
•    Nashville, TN
•    New Haven, CT
•    Newburyport, MA
•    Norcross, GA
•    Oakland, CA
•    Orange, MA
•    Pawtucket, RI
•    Peoria, IL
•    Philadelphia, PA
•    Providence, RI
•    Provo, UT
•    Riverside, CA
•    Rockland, ME
•    Rocky Mount, NC
•    Rutland City, VT
•    Salisbury, MD
•    Salt Lake City, UT
•    San Francisco, CA
•    San Jose, CA
•    Santa Fe, NM
•    Schaumburg, IL
•    Seattle, WA
•    Sevierville, TN
•    St. Louis, MO
•    St. Petersburg, FL
•    Stamford, CT
•    Washington, DC
•    Williamsburg, VA
•    Wilmington, DE
•    Worcester, MA
•    York, PA

Read Administrator Contreras-Sweet's blog post about Startup in a Day.