REDC's Regional Business and Development Training Center in Raymond. Photo: REDC
The Regional Economic Development Center of Southern New Hampshire (REDC) in Raymond launched the Greater Concord Community Microloan Program, a new lending program aimed at encouraging business development and job creation for new Americans and entrepreneurs based in Concord and surrounding communities, including Pembroke, Chichester, Loudon, Canterbury, Boscawen, Webster, Hopkinton, Dunbarton and Bow.
The program stems from cooperative planning from multiple Concord-based organizations, including the Welcoming Concord Initiative, a program of the Endowment for Health aiming to integrate immigrants and refugees into NH life; Second Start, a nonprofit providing education and childcare services to at-risk youth; and the Capital Regional Development Corporation.
Multiple donors and community banks contributed to the startup funds that will support small business and job growth. Current donors include the Business Finance Authority, Lake Sunapee Bank, Merrimack County Savings Bank, and Concord developer Stephen Duprey. Other organizations are considering donating as well.
REDC works independently or in partnership with local lenders to help borrowers secure the funding needed to start or grow their small businesses. A microloan can range between $5,000 and $50,000, and funding is generally used for working capital to grow the business or to purchase equipment and inventory. Funds can be utilized for working capital, equipment acquisition, inventory, and renovation costs. Along with funding, REDC also provides technical assistance, strategic planning, and marketing and design assistance.
“The immigrant population is one of New Hampshire’s only growing segments of our population, and we are pleased to be able to assist this highly motivated group as they start or grow their businesses,” says Laurel Bistany, president of REDC.