Tips for Starting Your New Business

San Jose is the third-largest city in California and the tenth-largest city in the United States. As the capital of Silicon Valley, San Jose is home to the nation’s tech giants.

Business Environment

San Jose offers a thriving business environment with support for growing businesses:

  • The area around San Jose is known as Silicon Valley thanks to the large concentration of high-technology engineering, computer, and microprocessor companies.

  • San Jose is the home of many large companies that employ 1,000 workers or more including the headquarters of Adobe, Altera, Brocade Communications Systems, Cadence Design Systems, Cisco Systems, eBay, Lee's Sandwiches, and PayPal.

  • For 2014, ranked the San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara metro area as the happiest place to work in the United States, with high opportunities for growth high salaries, and fun and innovative work environments.

As a world-class city with a globally diverse workforce, San Jose is a great place to start or grow a business.

Business Structure and Licensing

Starting a new business in San Jose means that you must first select a business entity and register with the Secretary of State. You should also familiarize yourself with any local tax requirements.

In order to operate a business in San José, business owners must apply for a business license with City of San Jose Finance Department. The business must also pay an annual business license tax.

Wholesale and retail businesses that will engage in the sale of tangible personal property are required to register for a Seller's Permit with the State Board of Equalization. Additional permits or licenses may be required for businesses in certain industries.

Business Support From the City

The San Jose Silicon Valley Chamber of Commerce provides programs and events for its business owner members in order to foster business connections and economic prosperity.

Business owners can also get assistance from BusinessOwnerSpace (BOS), which can provide help with launching and growing a business.

For women business owners, the NAWBO Silicon Valley offers monthly networking events, seminars, and promotional opportunities.


The following links provide resources to help you get started with your San Jose business:

San Jose Silicon Valley Chamber of Commerce

San Jose City Census Information

Buy a Business in San Jose

Find Commercial Real Estate in San Jose

Find the Best San Jose Accountant

If you are starting a business in San Jose, give us a call at (408) 990-3365 to set up a consultation regarding your accounting and tax planning needs.