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Funding Options

The availability of capital is crucial for small business startup, survival and growth. For entrepreneurs, getting a loan could mean the difference between success and failure, whether it’s used for renovation, purchasing equipment or working capital. Potential funding options for small businesses include the U.S. Small Business Administration loans, community banks and credit unions, microloans and alternative online lenders. Here is a look at some of the available options.


Funding 1Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs)

Small loans of less than $50k for entrepreneurs who are typically ineligible for traditional bank loans.

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Funding 2Community Banks and Credit Unions

Smaller banks are key allies to small businesses with similar services as big banks but with higher loan approval rates.

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SBA LoansSBA Loan Programs

The U.S. Small Business Administration’s (SBA) loan guarantee programs covers a variety of purposes, including start-ups, working capital, real estate, equipment and inventory.

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Alternative lendersAlternative online lenders

A new breed of online lenders are transforming financing options for small businesses.

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funding 3Crowdfunding

Entrepreneurs raise funds by creating an online campaign and reaching out to the “crowd.”

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Angel InvestorsAngel investors

Equity financing in which wealthy individuals invest their own money in startup ventures.

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Venture capitalVenture capital

Equity financing for early-stage, high-growth startups with funds pooled from institutional investors.

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Other Funding Options

  • No-interest loans (yes, they exist!)
  • A new development: crowdfunded, no-interest loans for small businesses.
  • Business plan competitions.
  • Cash awards to small businesses with stellar business plans.

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