How to Start a Business in Cupertino
Welcome to the world of entrepreneurs. This can be a very exciting and scary process at the same time. Here are a few resources and information that can help you in your path to success. Please be sure to look at the other resources section at the end. It is full of great organizations and services that are available to you.
Basic Steps for Starting Your Own Business
Step 1: Your Business Plan
A thoughtful and well-executed business plan is the first step for every potential entrepreneur. Good planning increases the odds of success. A solid business plan is your road map to success and a critical tool for funding. It will help you get everything that’s in your head onto paper, forcing you to plan for the challenges of starting or growing a business. Download a Business Plan template by clicking here. (Source: SCORE)
SCORE has also made workshops on developing a Business Plan available for free online. To register for a workshop, click here. (Note: To register for a workshop, you will have to register online for a free SCORE account.)
Step 2: Financing Your Business
Many entrepreneurs seek financing from commercial lenders; SBA loans are one of the most common.
Learn more by going to the U.S. Small Business Administration’s website at www.sba.gov.
Step 3: Fictitious Business Name
Register your business name, after doing a search at the Superior Court Building to make sure it is not already being used. It protects you from others who might be using the same name and prevents your competition from using your name in the future.
Clerk-Recorder’s Office – Business Division
70 West Hedding St, East Wing, 1st Fl,
San Jose CA 95110
Step 4: Local, State, & Federal Business Licenses
Depending on what you plan to do there are many different types of business licenses. Check with the city, county, and state where you will be doing business in.
City of Cupertino Business License Department
10300 Torre Ave,
Cupertino, CA 95014
Tax Collector’s Office
70 West Hedding St, East Wing, 6th Fl, San Jose, CA 95110
The Secretary of State’s Office
1500 11th St, 3rd Fl,
Sacramento, CA 95814
Step 5: Join the Cupertino Chamber of Commerce
Join the chamber and reap the benefits of chamber membership: promoting and enhancing your business.
Cupertino Chamber of Commerce
20455 Silverado Ave,
Cupertino, CA 95014
Other Important Facts
You must file your state business taxes separately if you are a partnership or corporation. If you are a sole proprietorship, you file through your personal income taxes. Contact the Franchise Tax Board at (800) 338-0505.
If you are self-employed your social security contribution is made through the self-employment tax. Contact the Internal Revenue Service at (800) 829-1040.
You will need a seller’s permit or a resale number if you plan to sell products. Contact the State Board of Equalization at (800) 400-7115.
If you have employees, you are required to have an employer identification number (EIN). You may also get one if you prefer not to use your Social Security number in business transactions. Contact the Internal Revenue Service at (800) 829-1040.
You are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance if you have employees. You can obtain a policy from many private insurance companies or from the State Compensation Insurance Fund.
If you have paid more than $100 in wages to an employee in a given calendar quarter, you are required to withhold taxes for state disability insurance, personal income taxes, unemployment insurance, and employment training. You must register for an employment account number. Contact the Employment Development Department at (800) 480-3287.
Under certain circumstances, you are required to withhold income tax and Social Security (FICA), be liable for your employee’s portion of Social Security taxes, and pay federal unemployment tax. Contact the Internal Revenue Service at (800) 829-1040.
Small Business Learning Center
The learning center is a redesigned, online learning portal for small business entrepreneurs. It has a streamlined, searchable catalog of small business educational resources including self-paced courses, videos and web sessions. The resources may be sorted by topic, making it easier to quickly locate helpful information. For instance, if you want to take a course on how to write your business plan, the learning center is a one-stop destination to find the course as well as other supporting content. Click here to go to the Small Business Learning Center’s website.
234 East Gish Rd, Suite 100,
San Jose, California 95112
The Service of Retired Executives (SCORE) is a FREE volunteer management-counseling program sponsored by the SBA, comprised of active and retired business executives who volunteer their time counseling and advising small business owners on many aspects of starting and better managing their businesses.
Silicon Valley Small Business Development Centers
Free consulting services for those of you who may experience problems in growing or expanding your business. (408) 351-3600
Other Important Phone Numbers
|Alcoholic Beverage Control||(408) 277-1200|
|Building Remodeling||(408) 777-3228|
|Concealed Weapons||(408) 777-3182|
|Cupertino Building Division||(408) 777-3228|
|Cupertino City Clerk||(408) 777-3223|
|Cupertino Finance Division||(408) 777-3221|
|Cupertino Planning Division||(408) 777-3308|
|Day Care Licensing||(408) 277-1286|
|Employer Payroll Taxes||(408) 277-9400|
|Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development||(916) 322-0694|
|Home Office / Regular Office Zoning Approval||(408) 777-3308|
|Patent Office||(408) 730-7290|
|SBA Cisco Systems San Jose Entrepreneur Center||(408) 494-0210|
|Sign Approvals||(408) 777-3308|
|United States Department of Commerce||(202) 482-2000|
For more information on how to start a business, click here to go to the City of Cupertino’s page.