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FUNDING SOURCES

Connecticut Regional, State, and Local Organizations

There are numerous organizations that invest in businesses in their community. These can include “Main Street” groups funding projects in individual towns and cities, statewide initiatives, or regional collaborations. Organizations supporting such investments in Connecticut include:

BDC Capital

Providing financing to businesses throughout New England, BDC Capital’s products include term loans, lines of credit, mezzanine capital, and more. Funding can be used for a variety of purposes, such as working capital, equipment purchases, real estate acquisition, debt restructuring, and business expansion.

The Business Development Company

Works to promote the strength and growth of small businesses by supporting companies that require funding that is unavailable through traditional sources. The Business Development Company provides loans of $90,000 to $600,000 to companies in Rhode Island, southeastern Massachusetts, and eastern Connecticut. 

Community Investment Corporation (CIC)

CIC is a provider of the SBA 504 loan as well as the following smaller loan options:

Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology (CCAT)

CCAT’s current financing and grant opportunities to manufacturers and allied service providers include:

Connecticut Economic Development Fund (CEDF)

In addition to offering SBA microloans, CEDF provides a suite of financing opportunities. These include:
  • Term loans, which provide between $1,000 and $250,000 for working capital, equipment, inventory, or debt refinancing
  • Commercial real estate loans of up to $250,000 to purchase commercial property
  • Business lines of credit, up to $250,000, to provide short-term financing; the lines of credit are often used to support cyclical or seasonal cash flow needs

Connecticut Innovations

Connecticut Innovations serves as Connecticut’s strategic venture capital arm and the leading source of financing for innovative, growing companies. Financing options include:

CTNext Programs

CTNext oversees several financing programs for entrepreneurs, startups, and early-stage companies. These include:

Hartford Economic Development Corporation (HEDCO Inc.)

HEDCO offers small businesses and nonprofits loans of up to $150,000, with terms of up to 10 years and interest rates of 4 to 6 percent. Loans are generally used for renovations, purchases of equipment and inventory, or working capital. Launc[H] One of four Innovation Places designated by CTNext, Launc[H] oversees funding proposals in the Hartford region. Investments are determined based on certain priorities, such as attracting and growing businesses and generating new sources of investment. Launc[H] also focuses on businesses in the insurance technology, medical technology, advanced manufacturing, and cultural fields.

Middlesex County Revitalization Commission

Since 1993, the Middlesex County Revitalization Commission has been providing low-interest loans and/or matching grants to small and mid-sized businesses in the region. Applicants must have received registration to conduct business in Connecticut at least one year ago, be operating in the Middlesex County region, be current on all state and local taxes, and employ no more than 100 people. New Haven Innovation Collaborative The New Haven Innovation Collaborative, one of the CTNext Innovation Places, oversees programs to provide financial support to entrepreneurs in the New Haven region. One initiative, Collab, is an 11-week cohort program that includes seed funding.

Northeastern CT Economic Alliance

Businesses operating within the 21 towns served by the Northeast CT Economic Alliance can apply for loans through the organization. Loans are generally $5,000 to $50,000, although it is possible to structure larger loans. The financing is typically provided to smaller companies, including startups who have trouble qualifying for a bank loan.

Southeastern Connecticut Enterprise Region (seCTer)

Part of the CTNext Innovation Places, seCTer provides loans to businesses that are not yet bank-ready, offering initial capital while also serving as a niche lender to help address funding gaps. Loans are intended to help small and medium-sized businesses expand, upgrade their machinery or equipment, and/or relocate in the region.

Spanish American Merchants Association (SAMA)

In partnership with HEDCO Inc., SAMA offers several loan options that entrepreneurs can use to finance startups, purchase existing businesses, renovate commercial or industrial real estate, or purchase machinery or inventory. Loan products include:
  • Minority Business Revolving Loan Fund, providing loans of $10,000 to $100,000 to minority- and/or women-owned businesses in Connecticut
  • Neighborhood Economic Development Revolving Loan Fund, offering loans of $30,000 to $75,000 to businesses in Hartford, Meriden, New Britain, and New Haven
  • Merchants Revolving Loan Fund, available to Hartford businesses that have trouble qualifying for traditional financing; provides loans of up to $50,000
StamfordNext Part of CTNext’s Innovation Places, StamfordNext offers matching grants to assist entrepreneurs in starting or growing a business in Stamford.

Waterbury Development Corporation

Loan options are available through the Waterbury Development Corporation for business projects in the city. Funding is typically used for equipment, working capital, leasehold improvements, purchase of buildings or land, renovations, or debt refinancing.

Women’s Business Development Center (WBDC)

The WBDC Equity Grant Program regularly offers grants of between $2,500 and $10,000 to women-owned small businesses in Connecticut.