Sources of funding for small businesses

Q: Can you please offer various options for securing, grants, loans and other financial aid for small businesses?

A: To be clear, there are virtually no grants to be had for a small business unless yours is a nonprofit entity. A search of the internet will help you locate information on grant writing and sources of funding.

However, for those businesses seeking loans and financial aid, the following are options you can pursue:

Family amp; friends are a good place to begin if you are just starting out with limited funds, anyone who may have an interest in seeing you succeed. Traditional sources of funding are hard to come by for a startup business.

Crowdfunding is where good people who want to give back pledge small amounts of money (typically $15 to $50) without expectation of payback. Crowdfunding websites include and

Micro lenders like make loans to minorities and low to moderate income individuals. Loans are up to $10,000 at no interest; however, they must be repaid within two to three years. lends to both startups and established small businesses. Interest rates start at 8.99 percent for terms ranging from six to 60 months.

Banks want to see a credit score of at least 650 with collateral to secure their loan and generally are prohibited from making unsecured loans. In addition to collateral you must show that you have the skills and background to be successful. A written and thoughtful business plan is a good place to start.

Small Business Administration loan guarantees will help member banks to be more accepting of your loan application. However, SBA fees will add 2 to 3 percent to the interest rate charged by the bank.

Credit unions are nonprofit organizations that, while still adhering to common sense underwriting standards, may be more flexible than banks in making loan decisions for their members.

Angel investors are individuals looking for a higher rate of return than they would receive from more traditional investments. They expect an average 26 percent annual return and most want a 5 to 25 percent stake in the business. Typical investments range from $150,000 to 1.5 million. In addition to their investment, you can benefit from their


Venture Capitalists are like Angel Investors, only they prefer bigger deals with established businesses. Generally their investments start at the $500,000 level and can go much higher. They will usually want a seat on your board, an equity interest, and expect the business to be acquired within five to seven years. Local angel and venture capital networks can be found online.

Note Some subject matter contained herein was taken from a document created by Doug Carleson, a former SBA lender and current Richmond SCORE volunteer. Gray Poehler is a volunteer with SCORE Naples. Counselors can assist and offer advice concerning management issues facing your small business. Counseling is free. If you would like to register for counseling or have a question, please call 239-430-0081 or fill out the form at A counselor will contact you within 48 hours. Please include your name, email address and a contact phone number.

JFL Hospital Board Hopeful on Finances and Projects

The report of Tim Lessing, Gov. Juan F. Luis Hospitals chief financial officer, to the hospitals governing board of directors on Wednesday probably would not have made a businessman happy expenses were higher than income. However, Lessing said, Overall, May has been a good month, suggesting the figures show continued improvement.

Some of the figures Lessing presented included charges for services, $14.6 million; an amount 11 percent higher than expected. Year-to-date charges are 6.6 percent higher than expected, he said.

Expenses for the month were $7 million while only $6.6 million had been budgeted for them.

Unsecured lending jumps 30% ahead of interest rate caps

JOHANNESBURG – In the six months after government issued proposed caps to charges on loans, unsecured credit ballooned by almost 30%, suggesting that lenders were maximising prevailing high interest rates before lower legal limits rained on their parade.

Unsecured lenders embarked on a lending spree in the months before caps to interest rates and fees came into effect, data from the National Credit Regulator’s (NCR) Consumer Credit Market Reports (CCMR) reveal.

From levels above R21 billion for the quarter to December 2013, unsecured credit growth fell during 2014 and the beginning of 2015, before spiking upwards for the six months to December 2015 immediately after the Department of Trade and Industry (dti) first published the draft recommendations on caps to rates and fees towards the end of June 2015.

It was proposed that the maximum prescribed rate on unsecured credit transactions be slashed from 32.65% to 24.78%.

Short-term loans, which have also seen interest rates reduced, show a similar increase.

Source: NCR data, Moneyweb graph.

Credit providers warned of the unintended consequences of this dramatic reduction in interest rates, which they said would see the credit taps tightened and consumers forced to source loans from unregulated loan sharks.

They then promptly went on a lending spree, presumably to grant as much credit as they could at the prevailing higher interest rates.

Larger loans granted over a longer term picked up during this time, according to the NCR’s data.

Following widespread consultation with industry, the maximum prescribed rate on unsecured loans was changed to the repo rate plus 21% (currently 28%).

The final regulations were published in November 2015 and came into effect in May.

Pullback in unsecured lending

Unsurprisingly, new unsecured loans granted in the first three months of this year have fallen by 16% to R18.9 billion, as credit providers pulled back following a bumper six months and in a weaker economic environment.

That lending ramped up in the months following the release of proposed caps to rates and fees is also reflected in the total outstanding gross debtors book. This provides a snapshot of the total unsecured loans still to be repaid at a given point in time.

This book was on a declining trend, but has spiked upwards following last years lending (borrowing?) spree. From R162 billion at September 2015, it ended March 2016 at R165 billion.

Source: NCR data, Moneyweb graph

While some credit providers have cautioned that short-term and payday lenders are filling the gap left by a contraction in unsecured credit, the NCR counters that short-term credit is unlikely to fill such a large gap.

For the three months to March 2016, R3.2 billion in new short-term credit was granted, a decrease of 28.5% from the previous quarter. Short-term credit refers to loans of less than R8 000 granted over terms of six months or less.

Almost 52% of the amount granted was for loans of less than one month, according to the NCR’s head of statistics, Ngoako Mabebe. Some 63% of the numbers of accounts granted were for one month or less, he said.

“Larger credit providers account for a considerable chunk of the value of short-term loans being extended,” Mabebe told Moneyweb.

A number of smaller credit providers including, for example, those lending out of the boots of their cars, continue to go unaccounted for.

In an attempt to curb consumer abuse, all credit providers are now required to register with the NCR.

Previously, entities needed to either have loan books amounting to R500 000 or 100 credit agreements in order to have to register. This threshold has been scrapped.

“Consumers are advised to obtain credit only from duly-registered entities, as doing so will advance their rights as provided in the National Credit Act. Consumers who are in doubt about the registration status of any entity can contact the NCR for verification,” said Nthupang Magolego, senior legal advisor at the NCR.

The Latest: Sanders gets extension on disclosing finances

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Latest on the US presidential campaign (all times EDT):

10 pm

Fifty-seven fiberglass donkeys are being installed around Philadelphia ahead of the Democratic National Convention.

Workers began installing the donkeys Thursday.

They represent the 50 states, five territories, Washington, DC, and overseas Democrats. Twenty-eight artists painted each donkey with up to six icons representing their state or territory such as a flag, bird or flower. They are being placed at landmarks including the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

The DNC host committee will hold a scavenger hunt through a smartphone app. The app will encourage visitors to find and complete challenges on their phone at each donkey.

Delegates will have a chance to take home the donkeys after the convention. Any remaining will be auctioned off with proceeds being split among the artists.

9:55 pm

Donald Trump took a moment during a rally to offer a tongue-and-cheek warning as a plane flew over an outdoor rally in New Hampshire: Mexico could be getting ready to attack.

Speaking about free trade, Trump turned to Mexico and its trade with the United States. As he praised Mexicos leaders as so much smarter, so much sharper than those in the US, he seemed to spot the plane.

He said, In fact, that could be a Mexican plane up there. Theyre getting ready to attack.

His quip was greeted with laughter from the Manchester crowd, at a rally about 2,200 miles north of the Mexican border.

8:35 pm

Sen. Bernie Sanders isnt directly addressing Vice President Joe Bidens claim that Sanders has said he will indeed endorse Hillary Clintons candidacy for president.

Biden has told National Public Radio that he has talked to Sanders and that Sanders says he will endorse Clinton.

Asked on MSNBC about Bidens comments, Sanders demurred and repeated his contention that his campaign and Clintons campaign are working on coming together on various issues and that he hopes they can reach an agreement at some point.

Sanders is more direct when it comes to Republican candidate Donald Trumps assertion that Sanders actually hates Clinton. On that point, Sanders tells MSNBC that Trump is lying as he always does.

6:39 pm

Vice President Joe Biden says Sen. Bernie Sanders, who is still technically running for president as a Democrat, will soon back Hillary Clinton.

Biden tells National Public Radio that he has talked to Bernie. Bernie is going to endorse her.

Sanders has said hes going to vote for Clinton, but he has not formally endorsed her. The former secretary of state has locked up the delegates required to become the first woman to win a major partys presidential nomination. Sanders was holding out for changes to the Democratic party platform.

Sanders endorsement would be another sign that the Democratic Party, split for more than a year between Sanders populist surge and Clintons second bid for the presidency, is mending. President Barack Obama has endorsed Clinton. Biden is set to appear with her in Pennsylvania next week.

5:51 pm

Donald Trump is pointing to a shuttered light-bulb factory in Manchester, New Hampshire, as evidence of harm caused by the North American Free Trade Agreement. But company officials say NAFTA had nothing to do with its choice to shut down the factory and move the jobs to a plant in Juarez, Mexico.

Glen Gracia is the spokesman for Osram Sylvania, the company that shut down the factory in 2014. Osram manufactures lightbulbs and lighting technology and has factories across the country and internationally.

Gracia said declining demand for traditional lighting products caused the consolidation of jobs. Many of the roughly 140 jobs at the Manchester plant went to Juarez, Mexico, and Foshan, China. Osram still employs about 850 people in New Hampshire in two other factories.

The Energy Independence and Security Act, signed by President George W. Bush in 2007, is part of what led to the use of more fluorescent lighting and caused the lower demand in traditional lightbulb products.

4:50 pm

Bernie Sanders has asked for and received another 45 days to disclose information about his personal finances.

Still a Democratic candidate for president, Sanders is required to file the paperwork. He has not been campaigning since the beginning of June, when Hillary Clinton effectively locked up the nomination.

But the Vermont senators lawyer is telling the Federal Election Commission that Sanders current campaign schedule and officeholder duties are causing delays in filing the personal finance paperwork; the lawyer gave a similar reason when seeking the first 45-day extension at the end of April.

The documents would provide a snapshot of how he and his wife, Jane Sanders, earned money last year.

Clinton and Republican Donald Trump both filed their annual financial information weeks ago.

4:41 pm

Donald Trumps opening acts are even more provocative than he is, and the Republican presidential candidate is okay with that.

When conservative radio host and columnist Howie Carr opened for Donald Trump at a presidential campaign rally in Maine, he brought up Sen. Elizabeth Warren, a potential running mate for Democrat Hillary Clinton. Car then put his hand up to his mouth and issued a stereotypical Native American war cry. Its the same call that Trump supporters sometimes let fly when Trump mentions the Massachusetts senator at events and calls her, Pocahontas. Warren says she has Native American ancestry.

Another Trump opener, South Carolina pastor Mark Burns, questioned Democrat Bernie Sanders belief in God.

In a Boston Herald column Thursday, Carr wrote that Trump has told him to never apologize. Apologizing, Carr says Trump told him, is what killed Jimmy the Greek way back.

That was a reference to Jimmy The Greek Snyder, a sports commentator who was fired from CBS after saying that black athletes were bred while slaves to be better athletes than whites.

3:01 pm

Hillary Clinton plans to hold her first campaign event with Vice President Joe Biden next week in his hometown of Scranton, Pennsylvania, for the state Democratic Party.

Biden endorsed Clinton earlier this month and the former secretary of state is scheduled to make her first joint appearance with President Barack Obama in Charlotte, North Carolina, on Tuesday.

Biden, the former Delaware senator, put out his first fundraising email Wednesday night for Clinton, calling her a force of nature. He was born in Scranton and lived there for 10 years before moving to Delaware.

Clinton has her own Scranton ties: She often notes that her grandfather worked in a lace mill there and her late father, Hugh Rodham, grew up there.

1:00 pm

Utah Sen. Mike Lee says he cant endorse Donald Trump for an assortment of reasons.

Among them, Lee says, is that Trump, accused my best friends father of conspiring to kill JFK.

Lee was referring to the father of Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, one of Trumps opponents in the GOP primaries. Trump at one point referred publicly to an unsubstantiated claim that Cruzs father, Raphael, might somehow be linked to President John F. Kennedys assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald. There is no evidence that the two men had any connection.

Lee told Newsmax TV that he also is concerned about Trumps plan to restrict Muslim immigration into the US amounts to religious intolerance. He noted that Utah has a large Mormon population.

Lee says his state state consists of members who were a religious minority church … and statements like that make them nervous.

Lee said he hopes he can get over his concerns about Trump. Either way, Lee says he will not vote for Democrat Hillary Clinton.

12:34 pm

Some of GOP presidential candidate Donald Trumps proposals are getting public criticism on Capitol Hill.

Without mentioning Trump, GOP Sen. Thom Tillis of North Carolina brought up the wall idea at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing Thursday, only to dismiss it.

The rhetoric is about building a wall, Tillis said. I dont think anyone here thinks were going to build a 20-foot wall from one side of the Mexican border to another.

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson later appeared to criticize a separate Trump proposal, the ban on Muslim immigration.

I think it is counterproductive to our homeland security efforts to throw a veil of suspicion over an entire religion.

Trump has now backed off the idea anyway.

11:10 am

Top Senate Democrats are defending Attorney General Loretta Lynch after she met with former President Bill Clinton.

New York Sen. Charles Schumer said nothing discussed was related to the investigation into presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clintons private email server and possible security lapses.

Bill Clinton and Lynch had an impromptu meeting Monday at the Phoenix airport. Lynch said they discussed Clintons grandchildren and that there was no discussion of any matter pending for the department.

The FBI is investigating the possible mishandling of sensitive information that passed through Clintons server, which was used for personal and government correspondence while she was secretary of state. Some Republicans are calling for an independent counsel to look into the matter.

Minority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said no one has questioned Lynchs strong feelings about the rule of law and her ethics are the best.

9:40 am

Donald Trump has hired the chief of staff of US Rep. Sean Duffy to run his campaign operation in Wisconsin.

Trumps campaign confirmed to The Associated Press on Thursday that Pete Meachum has been hired to start immediately as state director. It is the second Trump hire in the state in recent week.

Thats an indication that Trump will be making a push to win Wisconsin, a Midwestern industrial state that hasnt voted Republican since 1984.

Meachum has been Duffys chief of staff since 2013. Duffys northern Wisconsin congressional district is one of two that Trump won in the April primary.

Meachum joins Vince Trovato, who had worked for Trump in Wisconsins primary, as his two paid staff members in the state.

8:55 am

Former President Bill Clinton spoke with Attorney General Loretta Lynch during an impromptu meeting in Phoenix, but Lynch says the discussion did not involve the investigation into Hillary Clintons email use as secretary of state.

Lynch told reporters the meeting at a Phoenix airport on Monday was unplanned. She says it happened when the former president was waiting to depart and walked over to the attorney generals plane after she landed there.

Lynch was traveling with her husband and says her conversation with the former president was a great deal about his grandchildren and primarily social and about our travels.

The exchange comes as the FBI is investigating the potential mishandling of sensitive information that passed through the server that Hillary Clinton used for personal and government email at State.

7:50 am

Hillary Clintons presidential campaign is airing advertising in an Omaha congressional district, sending a signal that she may compete for support in Nebraska.

Clintons campaign says it will begin airing two television ads in Nebraska featuring the Democratic presidential candidates past work on efforts to help children.

Nebraska is a safe Republican state, but one of a few states that awards electoral votes by congressional districts. President Barack Obamas 2008 campaign won the Omaha-based district.

Clintons team hopes to garner support in states where Republicans have performed well in the past, including North Carolina. Obama will hold his first joint event with Clinton next week in Charlotte.

3:55 am

Hillary Clinton is pocketing huge campaign money from tiny fundraisers, sometimes with as few as 10 people in the room.

An Associated Press review of her fundraising activities shows Clinton and allied Democrats netted at least $18 million from just 15 of these boutique events.

While helpful for the campaigns bottom line, these fundraisers open the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee to criticism shes beholden to big donors.

Both Clinton and Republican Donald Trump can solicit checks of $350,000 or more from a single donor thanks in part to a Supreme Court ruling that lifted an overall per-person cap on contributions.

At one recent event, 10 people gathered at the home of the Pritzker family in Chicagos Gold Coast neighborhood, raising $1 million or more for Clinton and fellow Democrats.

This story has been corrected to fix spelling of Osram spokesmans name.

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

SAD ex-minister Phillaur, son in the dock over multiplex project

Deepkamal Kaur

Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, July 7

Levelling allegations against SAD ex-minister Sarwan Singh Phillaur and his son Damanvir Phillaur, a UK-based NRI has said the duo had committed a fraud of Rs 9.1 crore with him and two other NRIs in a commercial project on the Jalandhar-Phagwara stretch of the National Highway No. 1, the work of which is lying halted for the past many years.
NRI Nirmal Singh Bajwa of Dyalpur village in Phillaur has forwarded his application to Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Badal, writing that he is an NRI businessman settled in the UK and came into contact with the ex-minister during his visit there.
Sarwan Singh Phillaur made false promises to lure me and others to invest in their upcoming multiplex project in Punjab-Grand Multiplex Projects Ltd, whose director was his son Damanvir Singh. They floated a public limited company for the purpose of the construction of a multiplex, shopping mall etc, he narrated.
Bajwa added that while he had invested Rs 4.5 crore, other two NRIs AS Toor and Shaminder Singh Dhaliwal pooled Rs 3.35 crore and Rs 1.25 crore, respectively.
Bajwa has alleged, The Phillaur father-son duo, who were in control of the management of the company, allotted 10.03 lakh equity shares of Rs 10 aggregating to Rs 1 crore to the applicant group againstour investment and misappropriated the rest of the money by falsifying accounts of the company to show it as the share application money or unsecured loans. They falsely assured us to allot further shares after seeking the necessary approvals, but eventually did not allot the same for reasons best known to them.
He further alleged that no company meetings were ever called and appointments and removal of directors were made on the basis of the forged documents of the company. He has sought registration of a case against them under Sections 406, 420, 467, 468 and 471 of the IPC.
Damanvir Phillaur, on the other hand, has countered all these allegations, saying the entire episode was politically motivated to tarnish his and his fathers image ahead of the elections. The man had gone to court and withdrawn his complaint earlier. Why is he raking up the issue seven years later now?

State lawmaker wants monitor for Oyster Bay finances

OYSTER BAY – The Oyster Bay supervisor says he wants to lead the charge to repair the towns declining finance ratings, but a state lawmaker says the town needs outside oversight.

Standard Poor released the new, low ranking in the spring. Along with the Oyster Bay Town Council, Supervisor John Venditto says officials are working on a plan to fix the finances.

State Assemblyman Charles Lavine, however, says thats no way to fix the problem.

NewBridge Bancorp (NASDAQ:NBBC) Current Analyst Ratings

NewBridge Bancorp is a bank holding company. The Bank, through its banking subsidiary, NewBridge Bank and its branch network, provides a range of banking products to small to medium-sized businesses and retail clients in its market areas. The Bank provides services, which include interest-bearing and noninterest-bearing demand deposit accounts, certificates of deposits, individual retirement accounts, overdraft protection, personal and corporate trust services, safe deposit boxes, online banking, corporate cash management, brokerage, financial planning and asset management, and secured and unsecured loans. The Banks deposit products include noninterest-bearing checking accounts, interest-bearing checking accounts, money market accounts, certificates of deposit and individual retirement accounts. Its primary lending products are commercial, real estate and consumer loans.

Virginia city seeks state aid with finances

PETERSBURG, Va. (AP) — The city of Petersburg is seeking state aid as it deals starts the new fiscal year off with an estimated $7.5 million budget deficit.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports that part of the citys deficit includes $2 million owed to the citys public school system.

Petersburg financial troubles have been long running. The city council fired the city manager in March, and the city attorney resigned on the same day. The citys finance director left in April.

Gov. Terry McAuliffes spokesman said the state will help by first conducting an assessment of the citys finances.

Springfield apartment complex will house domestic violence survivors

Its not just any apartment complex. The 46 units planned for Talia apartments are meant to be a safe, secure new start for domestic violence survivors, who often face many obstacles to securing permanent housing. Lisa Farmer, executive director of Harmony House, says, They may not have been allowed to work so they dont have stable employment history. Its not at all uncommon for abusers to run up debt in the survivors names, so theyve got bad credit.

The project between Harmony House and housing developer, The Vecino Group, will have apartments with very affordable rent. It will include state of the art security to protect residents from their past abusers and Harmony House case managers on site for support.

Stacy Jurado-Miller, supportive housing developer at The Vecino Group, says, We also think that this site provides good access to employment, parks, resources, and if you look around, just has a general sense of stability and peace, and we appreciated that.

Vancouver fintech startup helps immigrants land on their feet

She was inspired to launch her business, which offers unsecured loans, after her own experience immigrating to Vancouver from the US four years ago.