The City of Oregon City, Clackamas Federal Credit Union (Clackamas) and Micro Enterprise Services of Oregon (MESO) have partnered to establish the Entrepreneurial Opportunity Loan Program, a pilot program designed to assist start-up businesses in Oregon City. This unique public-private partnership aims to boost the local economy and provide much needed “patient-capital” to startup firms in Oregon City.
“This is a critical time to launch this initiative as individuals seek to control their own destinies by establishing their own private enterprise and be more resilient due to their experiences with the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic,” said James Graham, Economic Development Manager of Oregon City.
Business owners who have been in operation up to three years, may apply for loans up to $20,000 to fund their growing companies. To participate, a business must be in Oregon City, have a business plan, and provide a personal guarantee. Borrowers selected to participate will not have to make principal or interest payments until after 12 months. During the first year, interest will accrue at a rate of only 0.5%, and after 12 months the interest will be adjusted to 3 points above prime. Borrowers will have up to 5 years to repay the loan. The Entrepreneurial Opportunity Loan Program will lend a total of $100,000 in 2022.
“The Entrepreneurial Opportunity Loan Program fits very well with the mission of the Clackamas Federal Credit Union,” said Katie Gillespie, Director of Business Services for Clackamas. “We are happy to partner with the City of Oregon City to launch this pilot program and support business owners in our community.”
MESO’s Executive Director, Cobi Lewis, also applauded the new partnership. “MESO’s mission is to elevate and empower historically excluded and under-resourced entrepreneurs with tailored assistance and flexible capital to build family wealth through small business ownership. Access to equitable capital is critical to the success of start-up businesses, which is why MESO is excited to be a part of this project. Our contribution involves providing technical business development assistance to companies interested in the program, including business planning, market research, and help with the loan application itself.”
Loan applications will be available starting August 1st. Eligible applicants are invited to apply between August 15, 2022, and September 30, 2022. For more information or to receive a copy of the loan application, contact Ann Griffin, firstname.lastname@example.org.