Business loan

NJEDA Board of Directors Approves $ 20 Million Loan for Main Street Microenterprises


The program offers up to $ 50,000 in low interest loans and no payments for the first year

The board of directors of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) today approved the creation of the Main Street Micro Business Loan, which will provide funding of up to $ 50,000 to qualifying New Jersey microenterprises with ten employed full time or less and not more than $ 1.5. million dollars in annual sales. The program is the successor to the microenterprise loan program established by NJEDA in 2019.

The Main Street Micro Business Loan is the most recent product of the Main Street Recovery Fund, a suite of $ 100 million programs created or expanded under the Economic Recovery Act of 2020 (ERA), signed by Governor Phil Murphy in January 2021. The ERA includes tax credits to encourage job creation, new construction and the revitalization of brownfields and historic properties; financial resources for small businesses; support for new supermarkets and healthy food retailers in desert food communities; new financing opportunities for start-ups in New Jersey; and support for the growing film and digital media industry.

“The New Jersey economy depends on small businesses for the jobs they provide and the uniqueness they bring to our communities,” Governor Murphy said. “As we emerge from the pandemic, we must prepare the ground for a stronger and fairer recovery that creates opportunities for businesses that may have been left behind in the past. This is exactly what the Main Street Microenterprise Loan Program does by helping smaller businesses overcome some of the long-standing barriers associated with accessing capital.

With $ 20 million in funds allocated by the Main Street Recovery Fund, funding from the Main Street Micro Business Loan will cover future operating expenses such as inventory, equipment (which does not require installation work or totaling over $ 1,999.99) and working capital to finance the company’s operating expenses. The loan will have a standard term of 10 years and the interest rate will be 2% with no interest or payment due in the first year.

“Microenterprises, which are often run by women and people of color, are a vital part of the state’s economy and an important creator of jobs. Unfortunately, they often face disproportionate challenges when it comes to accessing low-cost funding, ”said Tim Sullivan, CEO of NJEDA. “In keeping with Governor Murphy’s vision for a stronger, fairer New Jersey economy, the Main Street Microenterprise Loan Program will ensure more businesses have access to the resources they need not just to survive.” to the economic effects of the pandemic, but also to regain their economic equilibrium. stability and strengthen their resilience in the face of future economic disruptions.

To help ensure that all eligible sectors in the New Jersey Opportunity Zone receive fair and inclusive investment opportunities, $ 8 million will be set aside to support qualifying businesses and nonprofits with a primary business location within the 715 census tracts designated as eligible for selection as an area of ​​opportunity.

Non-profit, for-profit, and home-based microenterprises interested in applying for the Main Street Microenterprise Loan must meet the following eligibility requirements:

  • Must have less than $ 1.5 million in gross annual revenue for the most recent fiscal year (as long as the business has annual revenue)
  • Have no more than 10 full-time employees
  • Must be legally registered to do business in New Jersey, with a commercial location (other than a home office) in New Jersey
  • Must exist, as evidenced by the date of incorporation / incorporation, and have been in business for at least six months prior to the date the application was made publicly available
  • Must be in good standing with the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development (LWD) and the NJ Department of Environmental Protection at the time of application to be eligible for a micro-business loan
  • Must provide a current tax clearance prior to approval to demonstrate the applicant is in good standing with the New Jersey Taxation Division.

The Main Street Micro-Business Loan will not require collateral as the underwriting criteria will be based solely on credit rating. Only nonprofits will need to be fully underwritten and required to meet a debt service coverage ratio of 1.0. For all other for-profit entities, at least one owner must have a credit score of 600 or higher to be considered eligible. Personal guarantees from all owners or principals will be required from for-profit entities, but not from non-profit organizations.

Additionally, borrowers under the Main Street Micro Business Loan may be eligible to have the loan balance forgiven at the end of the fifth year. To qualify for this discount, the applicant must be up to date on all loan payments without default over 90 days and must be able to certify that they are still open and functioning as detailed in the loan agreement. . Additionally, recognizing the extraordinary economic circumstances that make this program necessary, NJEDA has reduced the non-refundable application fee to $ 100 and a closing fee to $ 400.

Main Street microenterprise loan applications will be reviewed on a first come, first served basis, depending on the date and time the Authority receives the completed application. All pending applications from the previous microenterprise loan program can still proceed to close their loan. Former beneficiaries of the Microenterprise Loan program are eligible to apply for the Main Street Microenterprise Loan. Due to the favorable conditions of this product, only one request per EIN is allowed.

For more information on the Main Street Microenterprise Loan, visit https://www.njeda.com/microbusinessloan/.

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