Project Description

Portland Small Business Loan Fund

Profitable Investments. Social and Environmental Benefits.

THE PROGRAM:

Gaining access to affordable capital is an acute problem for small businesses. UFA addresses this issue by awarding small-business and real-estate loans to qualifying low-income businesses, through the Portland Small Business Loan Fund (PSBLF).

PRODUCTS:
  • Small Business loans ranging from $5,000 to $275,000, with terms of 12 to 120 months.
  • Real Estate loans up to $1,000,000, often for facility expansion by small, local businesses.
KEY COMMUNITY DEMOGRAPHICS:
  • Poverty rates as high as 41.3%
  • Median Family Income as low as 44.8% of benchmark
  • Unemployment Rate as high 2.8 times the national average
THE RESULT:
  • Entrepreneurs in distressed neighborhoods are growing to their full potential, creating solid employment and greater vibrancy in their communities.
PUBLIC-PRIVATE PARTNERSHIP:
  • Joint collaboration among the Portland Development Commission, U.S. Bancorp Community Development Corporation and Portland New Markets Fund I (an affiliate of UFA).
RECENT BORROWERS:

Dragonfly Chai microbrews inspired teas using organic and fair-trade ingredients. Its dedicated crew of brewers, delivery drivers and support staff has earned the loyalty of a growing list of cafes and restaurants.

Ruby Jewel Hand-Crafted Ice Cream uses local ingredients in its small-batch ice cream and cookies, wowing devotees at its two Portland scoop shops. Their ice cream sandwiches can also be found at local grocers.

JD’s Shoe Repair is a woman-owned cobbler and shoemaker operating out of a former gas station that now houses several local businesses.

Discovery Gardens Family Childcare provides social, emotional, intellectual and physical care to children of working families in neighborhoods that are often underserved.

Night Flight aerial studio offers private and group classes. The Night Flight dance troupe regularly performs in theater productions and at parties and other events.