Microloans Come to Kansas City
Meet Mindy Curphy, small business counselor for Justine PETERSEN and Dorothy Browning, program director for the Women’s Business Center. Mindy is the small business counselor for the Kansas City Regional Microloan Program and Dorothy provides support for both men and women who need help developing a business plan or financials during the loan process.
Microloans can make a huge difference to a small business—and that’s why in October 2011, Kansas City wholeheartedly welcomed the Justine PETERSEN microloan program to our region.
Its presence was the result of a year’s worth of meetings and discussions amongst area economic development organizations that indicated their small business clients were hurting due to the lack of a microloan program in the Kansas City region. Justine PETERSEN, the second largest micro-lender in the United States and based in St. Louis, MO, got approval from the Small Business Administration (SBA) to extend its microloan program to Kansas City. The Women’s Business Center signed on to help them implement the program.
Much has happened with the Kansas City Regional Microloan Program since it was launched. Here are some highlights of the program’s success to date:
- 284 have attended informational seminars
- 127 have met individually with a Justine PETERSEN counselor
- 29 loans have been closed
So what is a microloan anyway?
Microloans are targeted toward those who have been turned down by a bank for a traditional loan and who cannot self-finance. The average loan size is around $8,000 but can range from $500 to $50,000. The goal of the microloan program is not just to make loans but to make a client bankable by traditional methods. The microloans help clients build their credit.
Criteria for loan-ready clients include:
- Can be an existing business or a startup
- Have an existing business plan or feasibility plan
- Have a current and documented stream of revenue
- Have an open bank account in good standing
- Can produce tax returns for 2010 and 2011
- Have tangible collateral equal to the value of the loan request
- Have two professional references
Learn more about the microloan program
You can learn more about the program and if it’s a good fit for you in two ways:
- Sign up for a one-on-one session to discuss your loan readiness and business
- Attend an information seminar that reviews the program. Sessions are held monthly at the KCMO Community Development (CDE) at 1900 Vine. The next session is September 26.
This program is providing a vital funding source to support our small businesses. It is anticipated they will close at least 150 loans in the coming year and raise the credit score of the borrowers at the same time they help them grow the business.
For information on the loan program contact Mindy Curphy (firstname.lastname@example.org).
For assistance with business plan preparation or review contact Dorothy Browning (email@example.com)
About Justine PETERSEN
Justine PETERSEN gives people opportunities to create new futures for themselves and their families by helping them become and stay homeowners, start and run successful businesses, access education and begin and manage personal savings programs.
About the Women’s Business Center
The Women’s Business Center offers a host of services to women entrepreneurs at all stages of business development. These services are designed to enhance our client’s entrepreneurial and general business knowledge.