June 23, 2018  
  Entrepreneurial Resources - Advice for California Entrepreneurs  
  Los Angeles, California Resources for Entrepreneurs  
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Starting a Business in Los Angeles, California

Thinking about starting a business in Los Angeles, California? This step-by-step guide walks you through the major decisions you should consider before opening a new business in Los Angeles.

Are You Sure You Want to Do This?

Most new companies do not succeed, in part because the founder did not have the entrepreneurial skills and traits needed to succeed. So, before you open a business, consider all of the implications of being an entrepreneur.

While entrepreneurship has become a popular career choice, we recommend you do the following before you take the plunge:

  • Talk to other entrepreneurs in Los Angeles. Ask them candidly what it's like to run a business.
  • We recommend reading Why Small Businesses Fail. For aspiring new entrepreneurs, it's a must read article.
  • Get feedback from somebody whom you trust. The people who know you best are often in the best position to tell you bluntly whether you will be a good entrepreneur.

What Business Are You Starting?

There are many businesses that you can start. How do you know which type of business is right for you? To help you decide on a business type, we encourage you to read How to Evaluate a Business Idea.

For step-by-step instructions on starting a variety of business types, visit the Good Businesses to Start section of our site. For example, you might be interested in our Starting a Diesel Generators Business guide or our Opening a Fraternal Orders Business guide.

Always keep in mind that you are starting a business in Los Angeles. Some businesses will do better in Los Angeles than others. Only by spending some time analyzing Los Angeles demographics can you decide if there will be strong demand for your business idea.

Los Angeles, California Demographic Information

Los Angeles has an active business community that includes small businesses, mid-sized businesses and large businesses.

To give you a better feel for Los Angeles demographics for small businesses, we have tabulated the small business sizes, based on number of employees, for business in Los Angeles.

Business Size# of
1-4 Employees 114409
5-9 Employees 30364
10-19 Employees 20355
20-49 Employees 15554
50-99 Employees 5451
100-249 Employees 3228
250-499 Employees 888
500-999 Employees 348
1000+ Employees 174
All Los Angeles Businesses 190771

As a new Los Angeles entrepreneur, you may also be interested in the table below. It shows how many businesses there are in Los Angeles for each business category. By looking at this chart, you can get a general sense for how much competition there is in the business niche that you are pursuing.

Business Type # of
Abrasive Product Manufacturing 5
Adhesive Manufacturing 1
Advertising Agencies 190
Alkalies and Chlorine Manufacturing 1
Aluminum Die-Casting Foundries 6
Aluminum Extruded Product Manufacturing 3
Aluminum Foundries (except Die-Casting) 3
Ambulance Services 11
Amusement and Theme Parks 4
Amusement Arcades 7
Animal (except Poultry) Slaughtering 7
Appliance Repair and Maintenance 18
Apprenticeship Training 11
Architectural Services 321
Armored Car Services 9
Art Dealers 83
Audio and Video Equipment Manufacturing 5
Automatic Vending Machine Manufacturing 2
Automobile Driving Schools 21
Automotive Exhaust System Repair 19
Automotive Glass Replacement Shops 25
Automotive Parts and Accessories Stores 200
Automotive Transmission Repair 44
Baked Goods Stores 67
Ball and Roller Bearing Manufacturing 1
Barber Shops 21
Beauty Salons 277
Bed-and-Breakfast Inns 6
Beer and Ale Merchant Wholesalers 13
Beer, Wine, and Liquor Stores 287
Blind and Shade Manufacturing 7
Blood and Organ Banks 9
Boat Dealers 4
Book Publishers 27
Book Stores 90
Books Printing 7
Bottled Water Manufacturing 4
Bowling Centers 10
Breakfast Cereal Manufacturing 2
Breweries 1
Broadwoven Fabric Finishing Mills 52
Broadwoven Fabric Mills 25
Broom, Brush, and Mop Manufacturing 6
Building Inspection Services 12
Burial Casket Manufacturing 1
Business and Secretarial Schools 7
Business Associations 96
Business to Business Electronic Markets 39
Cable and Other Program Distribution 39
Cafeterias 54
Camera and Photographic Supplies Stores 16
Canvas and Related Product Mills 8
Car Washes 135
Carbon Black Manufacturing 1
Carpet and Rug Mills 3
Carpet and Upholstery Cleaning Services 28
Caterers 94
Cemeteries and Crematories 9
Charter Bus Industry 12
Cheese Manufacturing 3
Child and Youth Services 116
Child Day Care Services 512
Children's and Infants' Clothing Stores 72
Civic and Social Organizations 144
Claims Adjusting 14
Clothing Accessories Stores 107
Coffee and Tea Manufacturing 4
Coin-Operated Laundries and Drycleaners 148
Collection Agencies 23
Commercial Bakeries 53
Commercial Flexographic Printing 5
Commercial Gravure Printing 1
Commercial Lithographic Printing 147
Commercial Photography 80
Commercial Screen Printing 63
Commodity Contracts Brokerage 10
Commodity Contracts Dealing 24
Community Food Services 28
Computer and Software Stores 59
Computer Facilities Management Services 17
Computer Systems Design Services 240
Computer Terminal Manufacturing 1
Computer Training 22
Concrete Block and Brick Manufacturing 1
Confectionery and Nut Stores 22
Confectionery Merchant Wholesalers 31
Construction Machinery Manufacturing 1
Construction Sand and Gravel Mining 1
Consumer Lending 28
Continuing Care Retirement Communities 11
Convenience Stores 153
Convention and Trade Show Organizers 49
Convention and Visitors Bureaus 5
Cookie and Cracker Manufacturing 8
Copper Foundries (except Die-Casting) 1
Copper Rolling, Drawing, and Extruding 1
Copper Wire (except Mechanical) Drawing 2
Cosmetology and Barber Schools 12
Couriers 88
Court Reporting and Stenotype Services 32
Credit Bureaus 7
Credit Card Issuing 3
Credit Unions 66
Curtain and Drapery Mills 18
Custom Compounding of Purchased Resins 4
Custom Computer Programming Services 298
Custom Roll Forming 3
Cut Stock, Resawing Lumber, and Planing 6
Dance Companies 9
Deep Sea Freight Transportation 2
Deep Sea Passenger Transportation 3
Dental Laboratories 71
Diagnostic Imaging Centers 55
Diet and Weight Reducing Centers 11
Digital Printing 16
Direct Life Insurance Carriers 57
Direct Mail Advertising 27
Direct Title Insurance Carriers 12
Directory and Mailing List Publishers 9
Discount Department Stores 20
Display Advertising 20
Document Preparation Services 51
Dog and Cat Food Manufacturing 6
Doll and Stuffed Toy Manufacturing 4
Drafting Services 8
Dried and Dehydrated Food Manufacturing 1
Drinking Places (Alcoholic Beverages) 228
Drive-In Motion Picture Theaters 2
Dry Pasta Manufacturing 5
Drywall and Insulation Contractors 22
Educational Support Services 72
Electric Power Distribution 4
Electrical Contractors 226
Electronic Auctions 4
Electronic Computer Manufacturing 3
Electronic Shopping 113
Elementary and Secondary Schools 280
Emergency and Other Relief Services 17
Employment Placement Agencies 150
Engineering Services 219
Envelope Manufacturing 4
Environmental Consulting Services 35
Exam Preparation and Tutoring 62
Exterminating and Pest Control Services 69
Fabric Coating Mills 4
Facilities Support Services 29
Family Clothing Stores 233
Family Planning Centers 26
Farm Management Services 1
Farm Product Warehousing and Storage 1
Farm Supplies Merchant Wholesalers 18
Fats and Oils Refining and Blending 5
Fertilizer (Mixing Only) Manufacturing 1
Fine Arts Schools 91
Finish Carpentry Contractors 61
Fish and Seafood Markets 36
Fish and Seafood Merchant Wholesalers 51
Fitness and Recreational Sports Centers 139
Flat Glass Manufacturing 1
Floor Covering Stores 83
Flooring Contractors 54
Florists 107
Flour Milling 7
Fluid Milk Manufacturing 5
Folding Paperboard Box Manufacturing 9
Food (Health) Supplement Stores 66
Food Product Machinery Manufacturing 1
Food Service Contractors 132
Footwear and Leather Goods Repair 16
Footwear Merchant Wholesalers 86
Formal Wear and Costume Rental 20
Fossil Fuel Electric Power Generation 1
Framing Contractors 20
Freight Transportation Arrangement 253
Fresh and Frozen Seafood Processing 9
Frozen Specialty Food Manufacturing 5
Fruit and Vegetable Canning 9
Fruit and Vegetable Markets 51
Full-Service Restaurants 1,755
Funeral Homes and Funeral Services 35
Fur and Leather Apparel Manufacturing 10
Furniture Merchant Wholesalers 114
Furniture Stores 238
General Automotive Repair 461
General Freight Trucking, Local 149
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals 30
General Rental Centers 19
General Warehousing and Storage 62
Gift, Novelty, and Souvenir Stores 225
Glass and Glazing Contractors 25
Glass Container Manufacturing 1
Glove and Mitten Manufacturing 1
Golf Courses and Country Clubs 18
Grantmaking Foundations 135
Graphic Design Services 254
Greeting Card Publishers 2
Gum and Wood Chemical Manufacturing 1
Hand and Edge Tool Manufacturing 11
Hardware Manufacturing 8
Hardware Merchant Wholesalers 49
Hardware Stores 61
Hat, Cap, and Millinery Manufacturing 7
Hazardous Waste Collection 1
Hazardous Waste Treatment and Disposal 6
Heavy Duty Truck Manufacturing 1
Historical Sites 4
HMO Medical Centers 9
Hobby, Toy, and Game Stores 40
Home Centers 18
Home Furnishing Merchant Wholesalers 168
Home Health Care Services 155
Home Health Equipment Rental 4
Homes for the Elderly 90
Household Appliance Stores 47
Human Rights Organizations 45
Hunting and Trapping 1
Hydroelectric Power Generation 1
Ice Manufacturing 2
Industrial Building Construction 2
Industrial Design Services 27
Industrial Gas Manufacturing 5
Industrial Launderers 27
Industrial Mold Manufacturing 2
Industrial Pattern Manufacturing 2
Inland Water Freight Transportation 1
Inorganic Dye and Pigment Manufacturing 2
Institutional Furniture Manufacturing 10
Insurance Agencies and Brokerages 529
Interior Design Services 171
International Trade Financing 16
Internet Publishing and Broadcasting 50
Internet Service Providers 73
Interurban and Rural Bus Transportation 10
Investigation Services 39
Investment Advice 244
Iron and Steel Forging 1
Iron and Steel Mills 4
Iron Foundries 6
Irradiation Apparatus Manufacturing 1
Janitorial Services 233
Jewelry (except Costume) Manufacturing 140
Jewelry Stores 425
Junior Colleges 16
Kidney Dialysis Centers 23
Land Subdivision 50
Landscape Architectural Services 41
Landscaping Services 124
Language Schools 22
Lead Pencil and Art Good Manufacturing 1
Leather and Hide Tanning and Finishing 4
Lessors of Other Real Estate Property 38
Libraries and Archives 9
Limited-Service Restaurants 1,654
Limousine Service 48
Linen Supply 8
Livestock Merchant Wholesalers 3
Local Messengers and Local Delivery 73
Locksmiths 25
Logging 1
Luggage and Leather Goods Stores 30
Luggage Manufacturing 2
Machine Shops 55
Mail-Order Houses 49
Manifold Business Forms Printing 5
Manufactured (Mobile) Home Dealers 1
Marinas 5
Marine Cargo Handling 1
Marketing Consulting Services 212
Marking Device Manufacturing 2
Masonry Contractors 17
Materials Recovery Facilities 7
Mattress Manufacturing 24
Meat Markets 88
Meat Processed from Carcasses 20
Media Buying Agencies 24
Media Representatives 57
Medical Laboratories 38
Medicinal and Botanical Manufacturing 2
Men's and Boys' Neckwear Manufacturing 4
Men's Clothing Stores 112
Metal Can Manufacturing 1
Metal Heat Treating 8
Metal Household Furniture Manufacturing 11
Metal Stamping 12
Metal Tank (Heavy Gauge) Manufacturing 3
Metal Window and Door Manufacturing 17
Mineral Wool Manufacturing 1
Miscellaneous Intermediation 65
Mixed Mode Transit Systems 1
Mobile Food Services 19
Monetary Authorities-Central Bank 2
Mortgage and Nonmortgage Loan Brokers 145
Motion Picture and Video Distribution 48
Motion Picture and Video Production 1,328
Motor Vehicle Body Manufacturing 2
Motor Vehicle Metal Stamping 4
Motor Vehicle Towing 70
Motorcycle Dealers 6
Museums 38
Music Publishers 39
Musical Groups and Artists 174
Musical Instrument and Supplies Stores 32
Musical Instrument Manufacturing 4
Nail Salons 155
Narrow Fabric Mills 11
Natural Gas Distribution 25
New Car Dealers 77
New Housing Operative Builders 24
News Dealers and Newsstands 23
News Syndicates 26
Newspaper Publishers 67
Nitrogenous Fertilizer Manufacturing 1
Nonferrous Forging 1
Nonresidential Property Managers 217
Nonwoven Fabric Mills 3
Nursing Care Facilities 84
Office Administrative Services 347
Office Equipment Merchant Wholesalers 61
Office Supplies and Stationery Stores 66
Offices of Bank Holding Companies 4
Offices of Certified Public Accountants 593
Offices of Chiropractors 193
Offices of Dentists 958
Offices of Lawyers 2,845
Offices of Optometrists 111
Offices of Other Holding Companies 61
Offices of Podiatrists 49
Offices of Real Estate Appraisers 41
One-Hour Photofinishing 22
Open-End Investment Funds 6
Ophthalmic Goods Manufacturing 2
Ophthalmic Goods Merchant Wholesalers 20
Optical Goods Stores 54
Outdoor Power Equipment Stores 4
Outerwear Knitting Mills 18
Packaging and Labeling Services 24
Packaging Machinery Manufacturing 6
Packing and Crating 11
Paging 8
Paint and Coating Manufacturing 19
Paint and Wallpaper Stores 31
Painting and Wall Covering Contractors 119
Paper (except Newsprint) Mills 2
Paper Industry Machinery Manufacturing 1
Paperboard Mills 3
Parking Lots and Garages 716
Passenger Car Leasing 8
Passenger Car Rental 84
Payroll Services 61
Pen and Mechanical Pencil Manufacturing 1
Periodical Publishers 107
Perishable Prepared Food Manufacturing 7
Pet and Pet Supplies Stores 53
Pet Care (except Veterinary) Services 37
Petroleum Bulk Stations and Terminals 11
Pharmacies and Drug Stores 320
Photography Studios, Portrait 94
Pipeline Transportation of Crude Oil 1
Plastics Bag Manufacturing 8
Plastics Bottle Manufacturing 3
Plate Work Manufacturing 4
Political Organizations 38
Polystyrene Foam Product Manufacturing 7
Portfolio Management 182
Poultry Processing 8
Powder Metallurgy Part Manufacturing 2
Precision Turned Product Manufacturing 7
Prepress Services 25
Printing Ink Manufacturing 8
Private Mail Centers 23
Professional Employer Organizations 31
Professional Organizations 63
Public Relations Agencies 195
Quick Printing 74
Radio Networks 9
Radio Stations 48
Ready-Mix Concrete Manufacturing 10
Real Estate Credit 140
Real Estate Investment Trusts 24
Record Production 19
Recreational Goods Rental 8
Recreational Vehicle Dealers 1
Refrigerated Warehousing and Storage 26
Reinsurance Carriers 8
Remediation Services 7
Rendering and Meat Byproduct Processing 4
Repossession Services 5
Residential Property Managers 348
Residential Remodelers 226
Retail Bakeries 113
Reupholstery and Furniture Repair 76
Roofing Contractors 47
Rooming and Boarding Houses 45
Sales Financing 50
Sanitary Paper Product Manufacturing 1
Satellite Telecommunications 4
Savings Institutions 107
Sawmills 1
Scheduled Freight Air Transportation 20
Scheduled Passenger Air Transportation 74
Schiffli Machine Embroidery 3
School and Employee Bus Transportation 15
Seafood Canning 7
Secondary Market Financing 2
Securities Brokerage 124
Security Guards and Patrol Services 165
Septic Tank and Related Services 2
Setup Paperboard Box Manufacturing 1
Sheer Hosiery Mills 3
Sheet Metal Work Manufacturing 20
Ship Building and Repairing 1
Shoe Stores 222
Siding Contractors 8
Sign Manufacturing 25
Silverware and Hollowware Manufacturing 2
Site Preparation Contractors 30
Small Arms Ammunition Manufacturing 1
Snack and Nonalcoholic Beverage Bars 436
Soap and Other Detergent Manufacturing 4
Soft Drink Manufacturing 3
Software Publishers 49
Software Reproducing 2
Solid Waste Collection 18
Solid Waste Landfill 3
Sound Recording Studios 82
Soybean Processing 3
Special Needs Transportation 18
Specialty Canning 1
Spice and Extract Manufacturing 7
Sporting Goods Stores 65
Sports and Recreation Instruction 39
Sports Teams and Clubs 7
Spring (Light Gauge) Manufacturing 2
Steam and Air-Conditioning Supply 2
Steel Foundries (except Investment) 3
Steel Investment Foundries 1
Steel Wire Drawing 2
Storage Battery Manufacturing 1
Surface Active Agent Manufacturing 2
Surface-Coated Paperboard Manufacturing 1
Synthetic Rubber Manufacturing 2
Tax Preparation Services 142
Taxi Service 4
Telecommunications Resellers 32
Telemarketing Bureaus 23
Telephone Answering Services 15
Television Broadcasting 37
Temporary Help Services 163
Temporary Shelters 27
Testing Laboratories 20
Textile Bag Mills 2
Textile Machinery Manufacturing 2
Theater Companies and Dinner Theaters 73
Thread Mills 2
Tile and Terrazzo Contractors 25
Tire and Tube Merchant Wholesalers 14
Tire Dealers 67
Tire Manufacturing (except Retreading) 1
Tire Retreading 1
Title Abstract and Settlement Offices 17
Tobacco Stores 20
Toilet Preparation Manufacturing 14
Tortilla Manufacturing 13
Tour Operators 56
Tradebinding and Related Work 16
Translation and Interpretation Services 26
Travel Agencies 255
Truck Trailer Manufacturing 1
Underwear and Nightwear Knitting Mills 1
Used Car Dealers 87
Used Household and Office Goods Moving 51
Used Merchandise Stores 129
Vending Machine Operators 17
Veterinary Services 67
Video Tape and Disc Rental 108
Vocational Rehabilitation Services 93
Voluntary Health Organizations 40
Warehouse Clubs and Supercenters 1
Watch, Clock, and Part Manufacturing 1
Water Supply and Irrigation Systems 5
Web Search Portals 11
Weft Knit Fabric Mills 15
Wholesale Trade Agents and Brokers 672
Window Treatment Stores 14
Wineries 7
Wired Telecommunications Carriers 140
Women's Clothing Stores 413
Women's Handbag and Purse Manufacturing 5
Wood Container and Pallet Manufacturing 17
Wood Office Furniture Manufacturing 4
Wood Preservation 2
Wood Window and Door Manufacturing 4
Yarn Spinning Mills 7
Zoos and Botanical Gardens 2

Don't Forget to Create a Business Plan

Writing a business plan is critical in laying a solid foundation for your business success. In effect, a business plan describes what you plan to do with the business and how you plan to do it. Starting a business without a business plan will greatly reduce your chances of business success.

If you want more information on writing business plans, we recommend reading Business Plan Contests. A great resource for business planning assistance is the free business counselors available to you through your local SCORE chapter in California.

Selling Tips

Mastering the art of selling is a must if you want your new Los Angeles business to do well.

Good selling involves demonstrating that your wares meet your customer's needs. Fortunately, we've got plenty of good advice to help you improve your selling skills.

Good Sales Strategies is worth reading, as it may give you some good ideas on how to sell your products or services. We have many more good articles on selling that you may enjoy reading.

How to Improve Your Entrepreneurial Abilities

Successful entrepreneurs recognize that what they know now may not be enough to ensure their future success.

Given that you are starting a business in Los Angeles, California, you will want to take advantage of the many programs available at nearby California universities, colleges and community colleges. It's also worthwhile to see if there are any networking groups or organizations in which Los Angeles entrepreneurs get together to network and trade their business experiences.

Los Angeles Entrepreneur Interviews

We're compiling a number of interviews with Los Angeles entrepreneurs. Enjoy!

Next Steps

Most new Los Angeles businesses underestimate the number of challenges they will face.

From this point on, you control your own destiny.

We are here to help Los Angeles businesses to be successful. We believe entrepreneurship is an amazing engine for job creation in Los Angeles, neighborhood development and overall economic health.

More Entrepreneurial Resources for Starting a Business in Los Angeles, California

Here are more links that we believe will help you be successful in starting a business in Los Angeles.



Additional Resources for Entrepreneurs

Buying a Business

Writing a Business Plan

Raising Money


Small Business Marketing

Advertising Advice

Public Relations -

Customer Service Tips

Entrepreneurial Selling

Workplace Safety