February 19, 2023
(NEW YORK) —The City of New York announced in January a new $75 million fund for small businesses “needing a boost following the pandemic.”
The NYC Small Business Opportunity Fund, led by NYC’s Department of Small Business Services (SBS), offers low rates and financial support to local businesses and emerging entrepreneurs across the city’s five boroughs.
Loans offered through the fund, considered the largest public-private loan fund of its kind, according to (Pix11 News), will be available to for-profit, small businesses— startups and existing businesses— with less than $5 million in annual revenue.
The loans will range from $2,000- $250,000 with an annual fixed interest rate of 4%. The size of the loans will be based on the applicant’s ability to repay the loan.
The fund is designed for businesses rebuilding after the pandemic and new and growing businesses with a focus on those in low- and moderate-income communities.
The fund is a project of Mayor Eric Adams offering support to small businesses. It follows criticism of potential inequities in the management of the pandemic business grant disbursement under former Mayor Bill de Blasio. According to a report by Pix11 News, the program was criticized for failing to advertise loan availability to small business owners within communities of color.
The fund is “designed for communities that have not received funding in the past,” Councilmember Marjorie Velazquez (D-Bronx), told Pix11 News. According to the city’s comptroller’s office, the Bronx received only around 2% of the COVID-19 emergency pandemic small business grants.
According to its website, The NYC Small Business Opportunity Fund was created through public-private partnerships including NYC Small Business Services, CRFUSA, Goldman Sachs’ One Million Black Women, Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth, and a handful of notable Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs).