Strategic Lender Partnerships

Categories: Business Tips   |  


There are many resources for small business owners. But, did you know that there is more than one way to obtain a loan other than using a bank?

In addition to bankers, credit unions, and other financers, we have three strategic partners that we work with to help our clients receive the best funding option for their business needs. Your Connecticut Small Business Development (CTSBDC) Business Advisor will be happy to explain the options of each and what makes sense for your needs. They will help you with your financials and put together an application for the loan that is best for you.

Community Economic Development Fund (CEDF)

CEDF was founded in 1994 through a public act of the Connecticut Legislature resulting from an initiative of then-Governor Lowell Weicker. He saw an urgent need for small business lending for the state’s economically depressed and stagnant cities at a time when traditional banking institutions were scaling back lending activity. Today, CEDF continues the vision of small business formation and growth as a catalyst for meaningful economic development throughout Connecticut.

CEDF provides loans to Connecticut small business owners, primarily in low-to-moderate income communities, and to low-to-moderate business owners who are not able to obtain traditional bank financing. They focus on communities in particular that need economic development as defined by the State of Connecticut. In other towns, they lend to borrowers meeting family income eligibility. CEDF lends in a variety of industries. For the fifth year in a row, CEDF is Connecticut’s leading SBA Microlender, offering term loans from a few thousand dollars up to $50,000. Through their other resources, CEDF also provides term loans and lines of credit up to $250,000, and owner-occupied commercial real estate loans up to $500,000. They understand that the needs of each business are unique, and they need to be highly flexible and creative to meet those needs. Their goal is to help structure the best funding for a small business.

Community Investment Corporation (CIC)

CIC is an economic development lender contributing financial expertise and practical advice to small business entrepreneurs in Connecticut and Rhode Island who have powerful ideas and need capital to grow them. Borrowers receive guidance through the pivotal steps of creating, expanding and executing a business plan, which secures the SBA 504, Community Advantage, or MicroLoan. As well as for the Community Advantage and MicroLoans, portfolio clients receive ongoing technical support for the life of the loan.

Loan sizes range from $5,000 to $5,000,000 depending on the use of funds, borrower creditworthiness, and the viability of the business plan.


Since 1975, HEDCO Inc. has helped clients and their communities improve, achieve and succeed by supporting their growth and progress. They build productive partnerships, create new programs that meet the changing needs of entrepreneurs, and increase the funds available to help people build and improve their business and non-profit organizations. They have the satisfaction of seeing people transform an idea, a dream, or a passion into a thriving business.

Their experienced staff members are problem solvers who provide a personal touch and are accessible when you need them. For over 40 years they have offered:

  • Financial Assistance
    • Providing capital for startup & existing businesses
  • Incubator Space
    • Providing office support and resources for startup businesses – free of charge
  • M/WBE Bonding
    • Ability to provide access to bonding for M/WBE construction firms
  • Professional Consulting
    • One-on-one consultations

As mentioned previously, there are many resources for small business owners. Your CTSBDC Advisor will be happy to work with you on which option is best for you and your small business. Contact us today!

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