Small business owners had high hopes for 2020, according to most small business surveys. For example, the MetLife & U.S. Chamber of Commerce Small Business Index showed they were confident in their own businesses’ health, their local economies, and the U.S. economy.
Then came COVID-19. The pandemic prompted small businesses to shift gears, changing everything from worksites to business models:
- Some businesses shifted from onsite workplaces to remote work environments, which sometimes required them to invest in technology to accommodate workers.
- In some cases, businesses had to expand their business models, adding e-commerce capability to their existing brick and mortar models.
- The pandemic also created opportunities for small businesses that produce services and products that are now in high demand due to the pandemic.
Despite those challenges, small businesses appear hopeful for a better year in 2021. According to the Vistage CEO Confidence Index, small and midsize business owners anticipate increased revenues and profits and expect to expand workforces.
Whether small businesses need capital for ongoing expenses or for new expenses, finding the right small business loan is likely to top their to-do lists.
Small business loans
During 2020, The Small Business Administration (SBA), a small business financing mainstay, became a lifeline for those affected by the pandemic. The SBA guaranteed nearly $800 billion in loans made possible by the CARES Act:
- The Paycheck Protection Loan program (PPP) provided $525 billion in financing to help small businesses retain employees. Small businesses that used at least 60% of the PPP funds for payroll are eligible for loan forgiveness.
- The Economic Injury Disaster Loan program provided $191 billion in financing for small businesses.
Given that CARE Act funding already has been distributed, small businesses looking for capital to support new ways of doing business should consider small business programs in Ohio.
Ohio small business programs
Small businesses working toward post-pandemic recovery can tap into a wide range of resources.
For example, the state of Ohio is providing industry-specific assistance such as the Bar and Restaurant Assistance Fund, which helps bars and restaurants that lost business due to the pandemic. Ohio small businesses can also turn to state-based loan and grant programs such as JobsOhio.
Finding small business capital is important, of course. But there are times when business owners simply need guidance. For example, the Ohio Chamber of Commerce offers subject matter expertise and opportunities to network and connect with other business owners.
The Council of Smaller Enterprises (COSE), a Cleveland-based organization that supports small businesses with mentoring and networking opportunities, is also dedicated to helping small businesses thrive.
Whether your small business need is financing or recommendations for resources, the Growth Capital team is happy to help. Ready to tackle 2021? We look forward to hearing what you have in mind!
To contact the Growth Capital team, give us a call at (216) 592-2332 or fill out our online contact form. We look forward to learning about your business and how we can help