EDA Logo Howard County Maryland - Economic Development Authority


Howard County Economic Development Authority (HCEDA) has a number of resources to help business start-ups.  Through our Small Business Development Center (SBDC) representative, we provide technical assistance and business development counseling for new entrepreneurs. In addition, our Maryland Center for Entrepreneurship hosts valuable business development workshops, contains incubator space through the iCat program, and provides networking opportunities through the Howard Tech Council

Our HCEDA business development team can provide help with finding a location for your business and they can also provide insight into the Howard County and State of Maryland incentive programs.  Our HCEDA staff can further assist your start-up by providing referrals to various small business support programs at a host of government agencies. We want you to know that we are in this together.

Business Resource Center

The Business Resource Center provides a variety of programs designed to promote entrepreneurial start up and growth. In addition to consultations, workshops and seminars, the BRC also provides access to a full complement of federal, state and locally-sponsored business development programs.

  • One-on-one counseling by staff professionals from each of our business development partners
  • Funding Advisory Office
  • International Trade Center
  • Government procurement assitance
  • Ongoing training programs
  • Networking opportunities
  • Referrals to other area resources, including professional organizations, government organizations, and others.
  • Support services for minority-owned businesses


The incubator-formerlly-known as NeoTech, now called the iCat, facility offers clients numerous amenities including:

  • The iCat Cafe with free wireless internet, comfy chairs and an environment conducive to getting "stuff" done
  • Mailing address
  • Meeting facilities
  • Conference rooms
  • Computer workstations with Internet access
  • Office equipment

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Helpful Websites

The Howard County Economic Development Authority has assembled a collection of websites that can provide additional information to new entrepreneurs. 

Step By Step

Let's get your business started! This step-by-step guide will show you how.

Licensing & Permits

Certain businesses and specific activities may require a license and/or permit. Find out if your business needs a special permit to operate.