[August 3, 2023] South Eastern Economic Development (SEED) Corporation has been awarded a $4.5 million loan from RI Commerce Corporation under the State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI). Funding for this program was made available through the reauthorization and amendment of the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010 (SBJA) by the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) of 2021 in order to provide $10 billion to fund the SSBCI as a response to the economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. This is a federal program administered by the Department of the Treasury that was created to strengthen state programs that support private financing to small businesses.
This initiative by the SSBCI is expected to provide and leverage billions of dollars in funding to small businesses nationwide which will allow those enterprises to expand and create new jobs. This level of financing will be accomplished through the participation of traditional lenders and intermediaries on small business loan requests.
“As a Certified Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI), SEED’s flexible underwriting terms, below market interest rates, and mission of supporting socially and economically disadvantaged individuals and underserved geographies are in direct alignment with the goals of the SSBCI program,” said Susan Murray, SEED’s Executive Director. “In these uncertain times of interest rates and inflation, this new program allows local lenders to continue actively lending while reducing risk up to 50%.”
To be eligible for consideration, a business must be headquartered in RI and have fewer than 750 employees in total. SEED’s maximum loan under this new program is $500,000, and an equal amount of financing from a traditional bank or credit union is required. Terms of 10, 20, and 25 years are available, and there is no pre-payment penalty for individuals borrowing through this program. Rates are below market and closing fees are minimal.
“The SEED lending team is available to answer questions on eligibility and loan structure, and we encourage anyone interested in learning more about these funds to reach out with any questions,” stated Murray. “We look forward to working with our lending partners to ensure equitable access to affordable capital to RI’s small businesses with unmet credit needs.”