ANNAPOLIS, MD—Governor Larry Hogan this week announced Maryland programs funded by the State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI) are open. Up to $198 million in federal small business relief is being administered by three state agencies: the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD), the Maryland Department of Commerce, and the Maryland Technology Development Corporation (TEDCO). These agencies will use funds to expand and enhance nine existing state business lending and investment programs.
“The State of Maryland’s small business programs are proven and effective, providing critical relief during the pandemic and supporting strong economic growth during our ongoing recovery,” said Governor Hogan. “This additional funding will ensure Maryland continues to remain open for business by supercharging these programs to increase capacity and better serve entrepreneurs and small businesses, especially those creating jobs and other opportunities that fuel the revitalization of disinvested communities.”
Created by Congress in 2010, SSBCI received a $10 billion allocation as part of the American Rescue Plan Act. Maryland was the first state in the nation to submit its SSBCI deployment plan to the United States Treasury Department and was one of the first five states to be approved. The nine programs funded by SSBCI will support businesses with limited opportunities for growth whether due to the pandemic or historic disinvestment. Maryland’s statewide SSBCI initiatives will target communities and areas with a high concentration of small, micro, and Socially and Economically Disadvantaged Individual (SEDI) businesses to support ongoing state investments in underserved communities.
DHCD will deploy up to $103 million and disburse the funds through three Neighborhood BusinessWorks program initiatives. The program provides financing to new and expanding small businesses impacting and operating within Maryland’s designated Opportunity Zones, Priority Funding Areas, and Sustainable Communities and Community Development Financing Institution (CDFI) Investment Areas. The Neighborhood BusinessWorks Loan to Lender initiative directly supports CDFI revitalization and investment efforts, providing funds for them to re-lend to local small businesses. The Neighborhood BusinessWorks Loan Participation Program assists eligible businesses with working capital and real estate acquisition. The Neighborhood BusinessWorks Venture Loans initiative supports strategic businesses with high potential job growth.
“Neighborhood BusinessWorks has provided more than $70 million in capital to small businesses under Governor Hogan’s leadership,” said DHCD Secretary Kenneth C. Holt. “These additional resources and new program initiatives will leverage the program’s successful partnerships and processes to assist new and expanding businesses in cities, towns, and communities throughout Maryland.”
Maryland Small Business Development Financing Authority
The Maryland Department of Commerce will deploy up to $45 million through two Maryland Small Business Development Financing Authority (MSBDFA) programs. Created in 1978 to promote the viability and expansion of Socially and Economically Disadvantaged Individual-led businesses, MSBDFA is now available to small businesses that are unable to obtain adequate business financing on reasonable terms. In particular, the program has become a well-established resource to support the growth of minority and women-owned businesses through a network of government agencies, local economic development organizations, banks, and private equity companies, as well as numerous business associations, chambers of commerce, and local professionals.
“The MSBDFA program is an important finance tool in helping underserved small businesses owners and their communities throughout our state,” said Maryland Commerce Secretary Mike Gill. “This federal funding has the potential to help numerous entrepreneurs in Maryland and provide the much-needed business assistance they have been seeking. We are grateful for this additional financing and look forward to helping our business community continue its economic recovery.”
TEDCO will deploy up to $50 million and will allocate the funds into four existing programs targeting technology-based Maryland businesses and entrepreneurs. Three programs—the Venture Equity Fund, Venture Capital Limited Partnership Equity program, and Seeds Funds Equity program—are primarily focused on venture capital and startup funding. The fourth, the Social Impact Fund, provides investment and support to entrepreneurs who demonstrate economic or social disadvantage. Through these four programs, TEDCO will continue to leverage its relationships with top-tier technology companies, entrepreneurs, and investors in the state while collaborating with universities, regional business accelerators and incubators, and other organizations.
“I want to first thank DHCD for their leadership in ensuring Maryland was one of the first states to receive approval,” said TEDCO CEO, Troy LeMaile-Stovall. “These SSBCI funds will help TEDCO accelerate our mission of empowering early-stage technology innovation and entrepreneurship. Our $50M will be used to fund four programs—Venture Equity Fund, Venture Capital Limited Partnership Equity program, Seed Funds Equity program and the Social Impact Funds—all of which help innovators and entrepreneurs achieve their dreams and scale.”
For more information about the nine Maryland business assistance programs supported by SSBCI and how to apply, visit https://open.maryland.gov/ssbci.