On Oct. 31, the Small Business Administration announced a series of promising statistics for the 2016 fiscal year. These numbers were encouraging not just in a broad sense but also specifically for women entrepreneurs, since they show a steady growth in the amount of money lent to them. Overall, the organization noted several instances of what it called "record-setting lending."
In the previous fiscal year, women-owned businesses obtained $253 million in 7(a) loans from the SBA, the source said. The 2016 figures jumped up dramatically to around $7.3 billion. Minority business owners also did well, with the total amount of 7(a) and 504 loan money totaling $8.65 billion. Overall, these two programs were responsible for $28.9 billion in support for small businesses.
Though the number of approved microloans has fluctuated in recent years, the numbers for community advantage loans have seen huge advances, from just 15 approved in FY11 to 987 in just five fiscal years.
All of these areas may have seen similar gains, but it's important to remember that they come with different conditions and applications. For example, the 504 financing program can apply to companies in the medical sector in addition to manufacturing, industrial and service entities.
While these last three are also eligible for a Community Advantage loan, medical businesses are not. These two programs also have different possible uses, with only the Community Advantage offering debt refinancing options.
Even in the areas where the two overlap, some businesses may be more suited to one or the other based on their primary characteristics. The 504 program also has a list of several qualities which make applicants ineligible, which you can read on our site.
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