What is the Business Development Loan Program? 

The Business Development Loan Program’s purpose is to support the retention and expansion of businesses operating in the state of Wisconsin. The program offers financing primarily to small businesses that have limited access to standard types of debt or equity financing, especially in (but not limited to) rural areas of the state. The program is intended to provide gap financing to existing businesses seeking to expand, increase operational efficiency, or enhance competitiveness in key Wisconsin industries.

How does the program work? 

An eligible business with fewer than 500 employees and at least 12 months of operating financial history may apply for a direct loan to receive financing for eligible projects in the state of Wisconsin. Loan amounts are typically between $100,000 and $500,000, for a term between 60 and 72 months (up to a maximum of 84 months for real estate). Loan terms, rates and interest fees will adhere as closely as practicable to commonly accepted commercial lending practices; loans for projects located in an economically distressed area will receive a discounted interest rate.

What types of businesses are eligible for the program? 

To qualify for a Business Development Loan, businesses should be based in one of the following industries:

  • aerospace manufacturing;
  • bioscience;
  • energy, power and control;
  • food and beverage;
  • forest products;
  • manufacturing;
  • water technology; or
  • transportation.

What are the eligible activities for the program? 

WEDC loan funds may be used for real property, plant and equipment; long-term leasehold improvements; and working capital, if fixed assets are also financed with WEDC funds.

How much funding is available? 

The incentives in this program are loans. Priority may be extended to projects based on factors such as job creation or retention, capital investment, location, industry and return on investment. Loans require financing from a primary lender.

How does the application and awards process work?

Applicants seeking funding should complete an application through an account manager. The completed application will be assigned to an underwriter and go through the award review process.

Read more about WEDC’s Business Development Loan Program.

INsource newsletter
May 2018