From a husband-and-wife-owned bed and breakfast in West Cape May to a fast-growing manufacturer in Riverdale, hundreds of small businesses across the state took advantage of low-cost lending and recovery programs offered by the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA) in 2014. These companies, which benefited from a total of $92 million in financing, expect to create more than 1,170 new jobs.
“The vitality of New Jersey’s small business community is intrinsically linked to the growth of the state’s economy,” said Tim Lizura, EDA President and COO. “Through our collaboration with banks and other local, state and federal partners, the EDA has been able to increase access to capital for small businesses that want to rebuild, maintain or expand their operations in the state.”
One of the EDA’s longest-standing programs for small business is the New Jersey Business Growth Fund, an exclusive partnership with PNC Bank. Through this program, eligible small businesses can take advantage of PNC Bank loans of up to $3 million, with a 25 percent or 50 percent EDA guarantee. Funding can be used for machinery and equipment or real estate. Since the program’s inception in 2004, more than 350 projects have been assisted, representing approximately $170 million in loans and $50 million in EDA guarantees. Yesterday’s board action extends the partnership for another year.
In 2014: Filan and Conner Plumbing utilized the program to purchase a property in Berlin for its plumbing and bathroom remodeling business; Tony’s Freehold Grill, a family-owned railcar diner, was able to purchase its location in downtown Freehold; and metal hose assembly manufacturer Flexline acquired a building for its operations in Kenilworth.
In addition to the New Jersey Business Growth Fund, the EDA partners with over 40 banks to help lower the cost of borrowing for small businesses. Banks that have been approved by the EDA for Premier Lender status benefit from faster turnaround and reduced risk. The streamlined process involves the EDA approving finance applications in as early as three to five business days, the result of which speeds the flow of capital to businesses. The EDA can participate in up to 50 percent of a bank loan for fixed assets (up to $2 million) or working capital (up to $750,000); the maximum guarantee for fixed assets and working capital is $1.5 million.
Riverdale-based EVS Metal, Inc. is a precision sheet metal fabricator and one of the fastest growing manufacturing companies in the United States. In addition to its metal fabrication service, EVS provides machining, finishing, engineering, logistic and integration services. The company received a loan from JP Morgan Chase that included an EDA participation to support its operations.
“Fueled by a commitment to service, quality and solutions, EVS Metal is proud to be recognized for its world-class manufacturing processes,” said Scott Berkowitz, President, EVS Metal. “Our business was launched in New Jersey 20 years ago, and we’re thankful for the support of the EDA as we continue to expand and grow in the state.”
Other businesses that benefited last year include: Tipico Products Co., a wholesaler utilizing a TD Bank loan that included an EDA participation to expand to a larger facility in Lakewood; Custom Labels, Inc., a printing company that received a loan from Two River Community Bank that included an EDA participation to acquire a new property in Fairfield; and, Acupuncture & Chiropractic Healing Arts, which used a Roma Bank loan that included an EDA participation to support its continued operations in Pennington.
In addition to partnerships with commercial lenders, the EDA provides below-market rate direct loans that can be used for fixed assets or working capital. Eligible businesses can apply for up to $2 million for fixed assets, or up to $750,000 for working capital.
Breslow Home Design Center received two direct loans to support its continued growth in New Jersey, which included the purchase of building in Livingston that the company had been leasing. Family run since 1924, Breslow offers its customers paint, window treatments and retractable awnings out of its two New Jersey showrooms. The company also services window treatments and awnings throughout the tri-state area and sells paint globally through its website, www.myperfectcolor.com.
“The direct loans from the EDA allowed us to purchase our showroom in Livingston and continue to offer our customers the stellar products and service they have been accustomed to for the last 90 years,” said Jason Shaw, Owner, Breslow Home Design Center. “We’re proud to be a third-generation, family-run business that calls New Jersey home.”
The EDA is part of the state’s results-driven Partnership for Action. Created by Governor Christie and led by Lt. Governor Guadagno, the Partnership is the hub for all economic development activity in New Jersey and is comprised of four interconnected and highly focused organizational elements: Choose New Jersey, the Business Action Center, the Office of the Secretary of Higher Education and the EDA.Related Articles: