Weld County renews support for Colorado Enterprise Fund Microloan program
Funding partnership provides more than $1 million for small businesses
The Weld County Board of Commissioners has approved $200,000 in funding to continue support of the Weld County Microloan Fund, which provides access to capital for local small businesses and startups, according to the Colorado Enterprise Fund (CEF) and the East Colorado Small Business Development Center (SBDC).
Established in 2013, the Weld County Microloan Fund has provided $1.3 million in loans to 31 small businesses which have created more than 260 jobs in the county. The Fund was launched with a $200,000 investment from the county that CEF matched at $200,000 to create a $400,000 loan fund which is administered by CEF.
Support from the county continued in 2015 with another $150,000 investment, which CEF matched at $150,000 to add $300,000 to grow the Fund. In November, the Weld County commissioners approved another $200,000 in grant funding which CEF matched at $200,000 to add $400,000 to the Fund, bringing total capital available for Weld County businesses to $1.1 million.
CEF has similar funding partnerships with the cities of Arvada, Boulder, Longmont and Loveland, and with Adams County, where small businesses are integral to the local economy and character of these Front Range communities.
The goals of the Weld County Microloan Fund are to help small businesses that don’t qualify for bank financing, facilitate business creation and retention in Weld, collaborate with county resource partners to promote entrepreneurship and business innovation, and to encourage small business ownership that supports community prosperity and economic self-sufficiency.
The Fund provides business loans up to $50,000 to small businesses with annual gross revenues under $2 million that are not able to obtain traditional financing but are capable of sustaining business operations and repaying debt. These businesses must have their primary office or operations located within County limits. Loans can be used for startup expenses, equipment and inventory purchases, operations, tenant finish and property improvements, as well as for the purchase of a business or franchise. Applications can be submitted online at http://www.coloradoenterprisefund.org/apply-for-a-loan-now/
Small business owners interested in applying for and receiving loans from the Fund must first become clients of the East Colorado SBDC located at the University of Northern Colorado Bizhub Collaborative. CEF also provides technical assistance at little or no cost to Fund borrowers for the life of their loans through CEF’s in-house team of small business consultants.
“I know this Fund has had a huge impact on small businesses in the county and this renewed support will just add to the ability to continue to do more,” said Richard Pickett, Executive Director of UNC BizHub Collaborative and East Colorado SBDC.
For more information about the Weld County Microloan Fund, contact:
- Lewis Hagler, Director of Credit, Colorado Enterprise Fund, 720.473.4055; firstname.lastname@example.org
- Richard Pickett, Executive Director of UNC BizHub Collaborative and East Colorado SBDC, 970.351.4274; email@example.com
About Colorado Enterprise Fund
Founded in 1976, Colorado Enterprise Fund (CEF) provides loans up to $500,000 to finance small businesses and startups unable to secure funding through traditional banks. With a mission to accelerate community prosperity by financing and supporting entrepreneurs and small businesses, CEF has provided over $56 million in loans to more than 1,900 businesses to help create or retain over 16,000 jobs in the state. A nonprofit Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI), CEF is based in Denver with a satellite office in Fort Collins. CEF’s lending and consulting services are available statewide. For more information, visit: www.coloradoenterprisefund.org
About East Colorado SBDC
The East Colorado SBDC has 29 offices across eastern Colorado with business experts in the areas of marketing, finance, strategy, HR, business planning, start-ups, and more. The team consists of 10 consultants who can assist small businesses with virtually any business assistance topic that may arise. Through the center, over 600 clients have expressed a 92 percent satisfaction rate. In addition to consulting, the East Colorado SBDC provides low-cost training workshops presented by industry experts who provide concrete, how-to information. Workshop topics range from starting a business, to hands-on QuickBooks training, to social media and e-commerce tips and tricks. For more information, visit: http://www.eastcoloradosbdc.com/
About Weld County
Established in 1861 when Colorado was still a territory, the growth of Weld County is rooted in its land. The third largest county in Colorado, Weld covers 3,996 square miles in the northern part of the state. It ranks number one in Colorado, and number eight in the country, in the value of agricultural products sold annually at $1.5 billion. The county also is known for its energy industry with oil and gas reserves active since the 1970s, boasting more oil and gas wells than any other area in the state. Weld County also supports a thriving business climate hosting major employers such as Anadarko Petroleum, Aurora Organic Dairy, Banner Health, Carestream Colorado, Halliburton Energy Services, JBS USA, Leprino Foods, Noble Energy, State Farm Insurance and Vestas Blades. For more information, visit: www.co.weld.co.us/