Small Business Funding Is a Searing Hot Topic

Small business funding can’t be called just a hot topic because it’s far beyond hot…it’s searing hot. The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) reports that SBA 7(a) loans have fallen dramatically in the last few years. In 2010 only 41% of all businesses were able to get financing from any source, and 16% of businesses didn’t get any credit at all.

You can’t help but wonder how businesses are staying in business when they can’t get credit. But who says they can’t get credit?  The fact is that many of those small businesses did get credit from sources like angel investors and equity partners and other sources of private lenders.  In other good news, there are probably just as many or more businesses that are eligible for private funding, but they are still pursuing traditional financing routes.

Perfect Conditions for Successful Funding

There is much inefficiency in the lending marketplace which is precisely why there is a thriving private funding marketplace. This marketplace was created because of the mismatch between the number of lenders and amount of capital available and the number of borrowers looking for business funding.  It works the other way too. There are borrowers trying to find investors with little success. In a free enterprise economy these are the perfect conditions for creating a thriving market that fills a void.

Small businesses generated 64% of the new jobs in the economy in the last 15 years according to the NFIB. You would think that traditional funders would make sure that small business has the capital needed for job creation, but instead it is estimated that trillions of dollars are sitting idle in banks and corporate accounts.

This is a perfect storm for private lending. If the big companies and banks won’t spend or lend, then it is up to the private business funding market.  The private capital market is lending more than ever before for various purposes. There are lenders willing to loan small businesses venture capital and startup funding for example. The private market is also lending in a variety of forms that include business loans, equity partners and angel investors.

Making Sense of Funding

If there is so much money available for business funding then why aren’t more small enterprises taking advantage of this capital availability? There are several reasons.

·    Don’t know how to find investors
·    Don’t know how to complete a lender worthy business plan
·    Don’t understand the variety of capital available in the private market
·    Entrepreneurs get discouraged after getting turned down in the traditional lending marketplace
·    Don’t want to pay expensive originating fees for business loans

It can be disconcerting to consider approaching equity partners or searching for venture capital without help. It can be just as intimidating to consider presenting a new idea that needs startup funding.  It can certainly be frustrating going from bank to bank feeling like a beggar.

Using a central point for finding private business funding makes sense. It is efficient because you don’t have to go from lender to lender, and it is cost effective. Most of all, it offers funding solutions for the very businesses and entrepreneurs that keep the economy growing.

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