The E3 Durham Community Navigator Pilot Program connects Durham small businesses with a network of support and resources through connections with our trusted, community-based Spokes and partners. The City of Durham and Durham County serve in an advisory capacity and provide institutional expertise, network support, and guidance to align and integrate opportunities and resources. The Durham Small Business Opportunity Loan Fund program was established by The City of Durham and Durham County as a resource to support small businesses in the community.
Businesses in Durham are still in recovery after this multi-year pandemic. While some might argue that we’re still in the pandemic, it is easier to agree that the support of local businesses and entrepreneurs has increased since the height of pre-vaccine COVID. What has also increased is inflation and thus the cost of doing business. Despite the many programs that were set up in 2020 and 2021 to support entrepreneurs and small businesses, there are still many barriers to doing business. This is one of the reasons the City of Durham and Durham County have established the Durham Small Business Opportunity Loan Fund program to support small businesses in the community. The program that began as the Small Business Recovery Fund during the height of the Covid-19 shutdown will now expand its reach beyond disaster recovery by uplifting local businesses as they grow and thrive.
Businesses can apply for loans in the amount of $5,000 to $35,000 to support with working capital, lease payments, existing real estate and equipment financing payments, refinance of high-interest debt and covering payroll shortage. The loans offer a 10-year term and a fixed 3% interest rate.
While your business must be located in Durham County apply, eligibility is pretty broad. Eligible businesses are those with fewer than 50 employees, including home-based businesses and food trucks, which are subject to additional criteria. Loans are ONLY available to businesses with revenues up to $5M, according to the most recent tax filing.
Right now applications are still open, so we encourage you to apply today by visiting the Durham Small Business Opportunity Loan Fund website.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Hey Awesome Girl
Tivi Jones teaches, consults, and creates to help you make work (and the world) more awesome! Founder of Hey Awesome Girl, a creative agency with a social mission to empower women to become entrepreneurial consultants, she has appeared on PBS, RollingStone, Time, People en Español, and more.