State Small Business Credit Initiative
Emerging Entrepreneurs Fund
The Emerging Entrepreneurs Fund primarily supports micro-enterprises and small businesses with fewer than 50 employees, targeting minority- and women-owned businesses and those located in economically distressed areas.
Businesses with fewer than 500 employees company-wide are eligible. However, the funding is focused on micro-enterprises and businesses with fewer than 50 employees.
The majority of the businesses receiving financial support through this program will be owned and operated by a woman or a minority or will be located in areas identified by DEED as distressed. Distressed areas are measured by population loss, higher than statewide average unemployment rate, and lower than statewide median household income.
EEF funds may be used for start-up costs, working capital, business procurement, franchise fees, equipment, inventory, as well as the purchase, construction renovation, or tenant improvements of an eligible place of business that is not for passive real estate investment. Projects that include passive real estate are only allowed on a limited basis as determined by U.S. Department of the Treasury guidelines. Financing of existing debt is not permitted.
EEF funds may total up to $150,000 per loan and must be matched on at least a one-to-one basis. Participating lenders are encouraged to structure loan proposals to achieve at least a 5:1 leverage of program funds.
Interest Rates and Terms
Each qualified program lender has authority to determine interest rates and collateral requirements within program guidelines.
Qualified lenders accept applications on a rolling basis. Application forms and procedures vary by lender. Businesses should apply with participating lenders. DEED is notified of all loans approved to ensure that all program guidelines are followed.
Select the links below to view, download or print these forms:
For More Information
651-259-7424 or 800-657-3858