Palm Beach County is home to numerous institutions providing financial assistance to companies within the community. While the Business Development Board (BDB) does not offer any direct financing, our organization maintains a growing list of resources to assist a wide variety of companies, and we regularly coordinate loans and other financial products and incentives. Whether your company is a small, locally owned enterprise, or a larger company interested in tapping international markets, the BDB can refer your organization to the institutions willing and capable of providing the financial support needed to grow your business.
PUBLIC/NON-PROFIT FINANCING SOURCES
The following organizations provide financial products for high-risk and newer businesses, or businesses in designated areas.
The Palm Beach County Section 108 Loan Program
The Palm Beach County Section 108 Loan Program is administered by the Palm Beach County Economic Development Office. The Program assists eligible businesses with funding for fixed assets and working capital financing. This Program is funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (Section 108 Loan Guarantee Program) and administered by Palm Beach County. These loan funds are federal dollars and will be provided as fixed or floating rate loans.
Projects must yield public benefits and meet one of HUD’s National Objectives. The creation of new jobs is required. The loan amount will be determined by the number of new jobs to be created.
Eligible activities include: Land acquisition, real property acquisition, utility and road infrastructure improvements, new construction of commercial and industrial buildings, rehabilitation of commercial and industrial buildings, purchase and installation of equipment and fixtures, refinancing of existing debt (as part of a new project creating new job opportunities), working capital, and any other CDBG-eligible activity approved by the Board of County Commissioners.
For full information, pleaser refer to the Program Criteria.
Black Business Investment Corporation (BBIC)
John Howard, President
2001 Broadway, Suite 250, Riviera Beach, FL 33404
(561) 845-8055; Fax (561) 863-0897
The BBIC is a not-for-profit organization formed by the financial and business community in accordance with the Small and Minority Business Act of 1985. The BBIC's main objectives are to ensure that black businesses have the opportunity to obtain financing and other resources to compete in the marketplace, and to foster increased employment and social stability within the black community.
Enterprise Development Corporation of South Florida
Jane Teague, Executive Director
3701 FAU Boulevard, Suite 210
Boca Raton, Florida 33431
fax: (561) 620-8493
The Enterprise Development Corporation of South Florida (EDC) is a non-profit organization that assists emerging science and technology companies. As South Florida's clearinghouse for entrepreneurs, EDC offers the BusinessLINC mentor/protégé program, and manages the Technology Business Incubator located in the Florida Atlantic University Research & Development Park.
Industrial Development Revenue Bonds
Business Development Board of Palm Beach County, Inc.
310 Evernia Street, West Palm Beach, FL 33401
Gary Hines, Senior Vice President - firstname.lastname@example.org
(561) 835-1008; Fax (561) 835-1160
Palm Beach County Attorney Office
Paul F. King, Assistant County Attorney; email@example.com
Mary James, Legal Secretary; firstname.lastname@example.org
P.O. Box 1989, West Palm Beach, FL 33402-1989
(561) 355-2734; Fax (561) 355-4398
Through the issuance of Industrial Development Revenue Bonds, Palm Beach County provides below-market interest rate financing for fixed-asset projects. For qualified borrowers, loans ranging from $2 million to $10 million for terms up to 20 years are made available at interest rates approximating 75% of the prevailing New York prime rate. Eligible projects may include manufacturing, assembly, printing, and food processing, and others in which raw material is converted or combined with other raw material to produce a finished or semi-finished product. Eligible costs can include the purchase of land, construction of new buildings, and purchase and installation of new equipment. The purchase and rehabilitation of an existing facility may also qualify.
Enterprise Florida Capital Program
390 N. Orange Ave, Suite 1300
Orlando, Florida 32801
Louis E. Laubscher, Senior Director of Capital Development
The Enterprise Florida Capital Program develops equity and debt capital products to ensure that high-growth Florida businesses have access to appropriate capital to finance growth and create quality jobs. To eliminate gaps in Florida's financial marketplace, capital products are delivered via partnerships with Florida's existing Economic Development Organizations (EDOs). Debt capital programs include Enterprise Bonds, specialized loan programs, and export finance assistance. Equity capital programs include early stage capital to fund business development; Cypress Equity Fund, a $35.5 million venture capital fund; and venture network development, which supports venture capital.
Florida Opportunity Fund
Legislation passed by Florida Legislature collectively referred to as the Florida Capital Formation Act, provided for the creation of the Florida Opportunity Fund (“FOF” or the “Fund”), initially as a “Fund of Funds” program that invests in venture capital funds. In 2009, The Florida Legislature expanded the Florida Opportunity Fund’s mandate under the Florida Capital Formation Act to create direct investment programs that invest in businesses and infrastructure projects. The Florida Opportunity Fund is sponsored by Enterprise Florida and is managed by Florida First Partners (“FFP”).
The Florida Opportunity Fund officially launched its fund of funds program in 2008, and its direct investment program, the Clean Energy Investment Program, in 2010.
The Florida Opportunity Fund’s “Fund of Funds” program was created to realize significant long-term capital appreciation by identifying and investing in a diversified, high-quality portfolio of seed and early stage venture capital funds that target (in whole or in part) investment opportunities within Florida. In addition, the Fund of Funds program will seek to:
- Achieve a superior internal rate of return on private equity investments while contributing to Florida’s economic developments.
- Foster the creation, retention, and growth of companies and jobs in Florida.
- Encourage the development and growth of a vibrant Florida-based venture capital and angel investment community.
- Help facilitate the transfer of technologies from the State’s various universities and research institutions to the private sector.
- Attract investments from regional and national private equity funds.
The Florida Opportunity Fund’s Clean Energy Investment Program was created to promote the adoption of energy efficient or renewable energy (EE/RE) products and technologies in Florida by providing funding to businesses to increase the use of EE/RE technologies, equipment, and materials in the State.
Funding opportunities afforded under the Program may consist of debt and other instruments, so long as the proposed activities are consistent with the Focus Areas described below. Examples of possible structures for funding opportunities include project financing, asset-based lending, mezzanine financing, and equity investments.
The Program’s Focus Areas for investment are:
- Facility and Equipment Improvement: Implementing, expanding, upgrading, or demonstrating energy efficient products, equipment, and materials for use by companies in their existing facilities and buildings in Florida.
- Renewable Energy Products: Acquiring, upgrading, or demonstrating small-scale renewable energy products, equipment, and materials for use by companies in their operations in Florida.
- Process Improvement: Determining potential energy efficiencies and then executing actions to reduce consumption or increase the efficient use of energy in existing production, manufacturing, assembly, or distribution processes, including the purchase of equipment and materials to make processes more energy efficient.
For details on the Florida Opportunity Fund, go to http://www.floridaopportunityfund.com
Florida Business Development Corporation
6801 Lake Worth Rd, Suite 209
Lake Worth, Florida 33467
Emanuel Manos, President
The FBDC is the Certified Development Corporation (CDC) authorized by the Small Business Association (SBA) to provide 504 financing for real estate purposes. The FBDC provides fixed-asset financing (primarily for real estate acquisition) to qualified businesses in conjunction with participating banks.
Florida Atlantic University- Small Business Development Center
Boca Raton - FAU Boca Raton Campus
777 Glades Road, T-11
Boca Raton, FL 33431-0991
Tel (561) 297-1140
Fax (561) 297-1141
Jupiter - FAU Jupiter Campus
5353 Parkside Drive
SR Bldg. Rm 221
Jupiter, FL 33458
Tel (561) 799-8101
The FAU SBDC Energy Office provides loans to encourage business owners to undertake projects that will reduce energy consumption and expense. Loans are made from a federal overcharge money fund from the Department of Energy given to Florida Energy Office. Loans are from $1,500 to $75,000.
U.S. Small Business Administration
100 S. Biscayne Blvd, 7th Floor
Miami, Florida 33131
Francisco Marrero, District Director
The U.S. SBA guarantees bank loans for qualified small businesses. A full range of products are available, including loan guarantees for loans under $50,000 and revolving line of credit guarantees for exporters.
INTERNATIONAL FINANCING PROGRAMS
Export-Import Bank of U.S.
SE Regional Office
777 N.W. 72nd Avenue
Miami, Florida 33126
James T. Morris, Director
The Export-Import Bank of the United States is an independent U.S. Government agency that helps finance the overseas sale of U.S. goods and services. It provides working capital loan guarantees and credit insurance to qualified exporters.
111 S.W. 5th Avenue
Miami, FL 33130
Luz Gomez, Director
Two not-for-profit organizations have funds for micro-enterprise lending program throughout Palm Beach County. Loans ranging from $500 to $25,000 are available for start-up or small-scale business.
Treasure Coast Enterprise Fund, Inc.
301 E. Ocean Boulevard
Stuart, FL 34993
The Center for Enterprise Opportunity (CEO)
2200 N. Florida Mango Road
West Palm Beach, FL 33409
The Center for Enterprise Opportunity (CEO) is a private, non-profit corporation organized under Florida Statutes 112. The chartered purpose and mission is to improve the economies in distressed communities by lending to small businesses and sponsors of community development initiatives which benefit low and moderate income persons. As a Certified Development Financial Institution (CDFI), the Center for Enterprise Opportunity is eligible for significant federal equity grants and other awards from the U.S. Department of Treasury to support its lending and programs.
As a non-traditional lender, the Center for Enterprise Opportunity raises capital from public and private investors, e.g. government, banks, individuals, corporations and philanthropic organizations and then deploys these funds primarily for lending to small businesses and community development entities. The CEO also provides technical assistance and training to prospective and existing clients. Direct services and referrals to a network of service providers are offered to existing clients of the Center for Enterprise Opportunity before and after loan closing in an effort to ensure compliance with terms and conditions of the loan; and ultimately to ensure repayment to the Loan Fund and profitability for the businesses.
PRIVATE FINANCING SOURCES
Miami-Dade County's commercial banks, thrift institutions, and state licensed foreign bank agencies provide a complete menu of loan products to meet the needs of most growing companies. In addition, Palm Beach County offers a wide array of bank alternatives, such as factors, commercial finance, leasing, second mortgage companies, and public-private programs that may finance newer or higher-risk businesses.
Palm Beach County offers several options for companies seeking equity financing. Venture capital funds finance companies with innovative products or services and high-growth potential. Investments usually start at $500,000. Venture capitalists expect to earn 40% to 60% annualized returns and to sell out in three to five years. Small Business Investment Companies, or SBICs, provide equity financing to emerging firms and offer more flexible criteria than venture capitalists. Other equity options include initial public offerings, limited public offerings, and private placements. Investment bankers and stock brokerage firms usually underwrite these deals; legal or accounting firms serve as intermediaries.
New World Angels
New World Angels (NWA) is a group of private investors dedicated to providing equity capital to early- and mid-stage entrepreneurial companies. Its primary focus is on companies based in South Florida.
New World Angels, Inc.
3701 FAU Boulevard
Boca Raton, Florida 33431
Angel Forum of Florida
Angel Forum of Florida is a not-for-profit organization that faciliates interaction between individual investors and local entrepreneurs through member networking and its monthly meetings and presdentations. The Angel Forum of Floirda, formerly known as AIFFL, was established in 2005 to facilitate the interaction between local entrepreneurs (opportunities) and angel investors (resources) and to help promote business growth in Florida.
The Gold Coast Venture Forum is designed to facilitate the flow of information between entrepreneurs and investors. Created by the Gold Coast Venture Capital Association, the Forum provides start-up, early stage, and expansion or second stage companeis, with a venue to reach funding sources, i.e; angeliInvestors, venture capital companies, investment bankers, fund managers, etc. The Forum also provides these companies with the opportunity to meet professionals such as attorneys, CPAs, financial consutlants, management consultants, business plan consultants, marketing specialists, service providers, and other entrepreneurs.
SMALL BUSINESS ASSISTANCE
SCORE is a nonprofit association dedicated to educating entrepreneurs and helping small businesses start, grow, and succeed nationwide. SCORE is a resource partner with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), and has been mentoring small business owners for more than 40 years.
SCORE is a valuable network of 13,000+ volunteers who offer small business entrepreneurs confidential business counseling services at no charge. SCORE volunteers have the knowledge and experience to help any small business owner get the help they need. SCORE also provides local workshops and events throughout the country to connect small business owners with the people and information they need to start, grow, and maintain their businesses, as well as online workshops.
MINORITY BUSINESS ASSISTANCE
CAMACOL/The Latin Chamber of Commerce of the United States
1417 W. Flagler Street
Miami, Florida 33135
William Alexander, President
Programs includes business assistance, trade missions, business relationships throughout Latin America and the Caribbean, and an in-house employment bureau.
The Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Palm Beach County
809 North Dixie Highway
West Palm Beach, FL 33401
The Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Palm Beach County is the information source to help, develop, and grow the area's Hispanic market. It provides economic and demographic data on the strength and future growth of the Hispanic market; represents and helps Hispanic enterprises in their business endeavors; and develops ties with non-Hispanic businesses that utilize the resources of the Hispanic market for commerce and employment.
Southern Florida Minority Supplier Development Council
Palm Beach Office
Office Depot Headquarter
6600 North Military Trail
Boca Raton, FL 33496
Tel: (561) 439-3609
Fax: (775) 822-0679
The mission of the Southern Florida Minority Supplier Development Council is to link Corporations and Government Agencies with Minority Business Enterprises (MBEs) to foster business development and expansion. The SFMSDC was founded in 1975 by the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce and the Greater Miami Progress Foundation for the purpose of fostering the development of minority-owned businesses throughout South Florida.
The Council's main function is to register and certify minority-owned businesses. The process ensures that these businesses are 51% minority-owned and operated in accordance with the guidelines set by the National Minority Supplier Development Council. The SFMSDC is one of 38 regional councils affiliated with the NMSDC. In order to more effectively carry out its mission, the SFMSDC provides support to Corporate members and MBE affiliates from three offices in Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties
Where can you get more information?
Business Development Board of Palm Beach County
310 Evernia Street, West Palm Beach, FL 33401
Kelly Smallridge, President and CEO
Gary Hines, Senior Vice President, Administration
Brian Cartland, Vice President, Business Recruitment
Shawn Rowan, Vice President, Business Retention and Expansion