Business Startup

Discover the difference in strong local and state support.

Ready to start a business? Starting in Durant is the right move. In a state ranked by Wallet Hub as #5 in “best states to start a business,” Durant is both dedicated and experienced in nurturing business growth. Several of the city’s leading employers began as small startups right here, and Oklahoma’s Small Business Development Center was founded here by Southeastern Oklahoma State University. We believe in your business; we work with you to create success through multiple resources providing no-cost support and assistance. These include:

Small Business Development Center at Southeastern Oklahoma State University: SOSU founded this powerful partnership with the U.S. Small Business Administration in 1984, and today the university continues to take a leading role in the state-wide network of public and private entities. The SBDC’s broad base of stakeholders allows new business to tap into a system of wide-ranging experience and expertise, from chambers of commerce to banks and financial institutions, ready with assistance in areas such as:

  • Financial analysis
  • Capital sourcing
  • Industry research
  • Market research and analysis
  • Digital marketing and social media 
  • Management support
  • Geographic information systems


Get more information and sign up for services here.


REI Oklahoma: Support from REI Oklahoma is both comprehensive and practical. Begun in the early 1980s as a business financing organization, REI now offers assistance in several essential areas including:

  • Funding: Experts identify undercapitalization as the #1 reason for small business failure. Through a partnership with private sector lenders to provide SBA 504 loans, REI provides business loans ranging in amounts from $1,000 to more than $10 million.
  • Accounting: Managing funds can be another critical hurdle for startups. REI’s QuickBooks-certified accounting staff can provide assessments and recommendations for the best bookkeeping practices.
  • Business space: Finding the right space to work that leaves enough space in the budget can be critical in the early lifecycle of the business. REI can help.
  • REI New Market Tax Credits: This 39% federal income tax credit, available over a period of 7 years, is available to investments made in eligible low-income areas. Several businesses in Durant have successfully leveraged this program.
  • Specialized assistance: REI also provides targeted assistance through:
    • REI Women’s Business Center, which has helped more than 30,000 entrepreneurs with training workshops, business consulting, and networking opportunities.
    • REI Native American Business Center, which offers a range of business support for Native Americans to start and grow their business. This includes guidance in the process of earning minority certifications such as 8(a) and HUBZone through the SBA.

For more information, see here.

Durant Main Street: For those considering a startup in retail, dining, or other commercial venture, Main Street Durant can be an empowering resource for market intelligence and more. An accredited member of the national Main Street organization, Main Street Durant supports local business with designated best practices in preservation-based development and revitalization. For more information, see here.


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