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Q&A with Commerce: Small Business Assistance Program

Q&A with Commerce: Small Business Assistance Program March 8, 2017

The Rhode Island Commerce Corporation is starting a new series called “Q&A with the Commerce Corporation.” We are hoping to hear from you, the businesses in Rhode Island, to answer questions about our programs, services or resources. We will also address concerns you may have regarding the process of doing business in Rhode Island and inform you of any news you may find useful.


Small Business Assistance Program

Q. I read an announcement about the Small Business Assistance Program. How can this program can help my business?

A. The Small Business Assistance program eases the path to growth for small Rhode Island businesses. The goal of the program is to assist viable entrepreneurs and small businesses that encounter difficulty obtaining adequate credit from traditional lending organizations. Among the businesses the program targets are women- and minority-owned establishments as well as enterprises in Rhode Island’s underserved communities.

The Commerce Corporation has partnered with the following organizations to provide direct loans to businesses.

For direct loans at or above $25,000:

  • Business Development Company of Rhode Island (BDCRI)
  • South Eastern Economic Development (SEED) Corporation
  • Community Investment Corporation (CIC)

For direct micro-loans between $2,000 and $25,000:

  • Center for Women & Enterprise (CWE)
  • Social Enterprise Greenhouse (SEG)
  • Community Investment Corporation (CIC)


Rhode Island Capital Access Program for $1,000 – $750 Loans

This program encourages banks and credit unions to make slightly riskier loans by providing matching funds from the state to create cash collateral accounts. Rhode Island Capital Corporation, which administers the program, also offers a full suite of business lines of credit, SBA loans, term loans and mezzanine investments from $50,000 to $5 million.



For more information, visit our website or email Dan Jennings or Doris Blanchard.


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Categories: Events, Q&A with Commerce, Resources
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