What Incentives and Financing Options Are Available to Small and Mid-sized Businesses in New Jersey?

October 31, 2019

By Aimee Conant

The New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) offers both financing and incentives for small and mid-sized businesses in New Jersey. Below is a summary of what is available.

Access

Financing to small businesses with more flexibility to borrowers by emphasizing cash flow over hard collateral. There are direct loans available through the NJEDA as well as loan participations or guarantees in partnership with a NJEDA Premier Lender. See Premier Lender Program section below for a link to the current list of Premier Lenders. These loans can be used for fixed asset purchases or working capital.

  • Up to 50% of the bank loan amount for fixed asset loans; maximum NJEDA participation or guarantee of $1,000,000 with total NJEDA exposure not to exceed $1,500,000.
  • Up to 50% of the bank loan amount for working capital loans; maximum EDA participation or guarantee of $500,000 with total NJEDA exposure not to exceed $1,500,000.
  • Under this program the EDA can also offer direct loans.
  • Up to $500,000 for fixed assets with total NJEDA exposure not to exceed $750,000.
  • Up to $250,000 for working capital with total NJEDA exposure not to exceed $750,000.

Direct Loans

Financing for businesses committed to job creation and retention may be eligible through the NJEDA when conventional financing is not available. These loans are available for up to $2 million for fixed assets ($3 million may be available to qualified businesses in targeted urban centers, regional centers and metropolitan planning areas) and $750,000 for working capital.

Small Business Lease Assistance Program

Reimbursement for a percentage of annual lease payments in eligible areas that plan to lease between 500 – 5,000 sq.ft. of new or additional market-rate, first-floor office, industrial or retail space for a minimum five-year term.

Premier Lender Program

Opportunities for small businesses and EDA’s lending partners by providing new, low-cost financing opportunities with faster turnaround. If your small business is discussing potential financing with one of EDA’s Premier Lender banks, EDA’s participation or guarantee of a portion of the financing can lower the cost of borrowing for your business.

Premier CDFI Program

NJ EDA provides small businesses with loan participations, loan guarantees and line of credit guarantees in partnership with Premier Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs). These loans are available for fixed assets or term working capital for up to $500,000 with NJEDA exposure not to exceed 50%.

Small Business Fun

Credit-worthy, small, minority-owned or women-owned businesses that have been in operation for at least one full year and may not have the ability to get bank financing, or not-for-profit corporations that have been operating for at least three full years, may be eligible for direct loans under the Small Business Fund. For small businesses, these loans are available for fixed assets or term working capital for up to $500,000. For not-for-profits, these loans are available for fixed assets or term working capital for up to $500,000 with 1.0X historical debt service coverage.

Small Business Services

The EDA administers millions of dollars in funding as loans and loan guarantees to New Jersey small businesses, as well as partnering with several organizations that provide a wide array of services to New Jersey small businesses and entrepreneurs. These services include business improvement and lease incentives, industry specific programs and technical assistance with entrepreneurial assessment tools, market opportunity analysis, training, mentoring and assistance with identifying resources and funding opportunities.

Small Business Bonding Readiness Assistance Program

The NJEDA has partnered with the African American Chamber of Commerce of NJ (AACCNJ) and Minority Business Development Institute (MBDI) to offer a program that is designed to help construction business needs, providing comprehensive technical assistance, supportive services and access to capital. The program’s goal is to have more qualified small firms bidding and working on public work and state contracts. There is classroom training, QuickBooks training and one-on-one consulting services included in this program.

Wineries & Vineyards

Eligible New Jersey wineries and vineyards can now have access to financing through the NJEDA.

Eligible wineries are commercial farms where the owner or operator has been issued and is operating in compliance with a plenary winery license or farm winery license pursuant to R.S.33:1-10.

Eligible vineyards must consist of at least one contiguous acre dedicated to the growing of grapes or other fruit that are used or are intended to be used in the production of wine by a winery as well as any other plants or other improvements located thereon.

New Jersey Bioscience Center

A biotech incubator and research park in North Brunswick that participates in the NJ Ignite Program. This program can provide approved qualified biotech companies with up to nine months of free rent.

See the NJEDA website for further information, eligibility requirements and interest rates and fees related to the above.

About Aimee Conant

Ms. Conant is a Senior Manager in the Private Business Services Group with over 10 years of public accounting experience. She provides advisory services for privately held businesses and individuals.

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