Access Plus Capital Helps Keep Central Valley Communities Prosperous in 2021
Fresno, CA – Small business loans are a critical component of economic development in Central Valley’s underinvested communities. The new Impact Report released by Access Plus Capital, a mission-driven small business loan fund, shows the organization’s efforts to keep these communities prosperous, with $5+ million in funding and 105 businesses funded during 2021.
75% of this funding was provided to minority-owned businesses, and 43% to women-owned enterprises. From 2020 to 2021, Access Plus Capital doubled the amount of funding provided to Spanish businesses (37%), with many black-owned and Asian-owned businesses in Kern County receiving 46% of the funding, where the effects of the pandemic severely hurt business owners.
“We recognized the disparities in Kern County, and we intentionally turned our focus toward supporting the business community there,” said Tate Hill, Access Plus Capital Executive Director. “We worked closely with the City of Bakersfield, strengthened our partnerships with Kern County business chambers, and began a recruitment campaign to bring the best business development resources to the residents of these urban and rural communities.”
Access Plus Capital deployed more than $2 million in COVID relief to struggling businesses and attracted new funding to support microenterprises. The company also participated in the collaborative work of Fresno Drive Initiative, delivering coaching support, technical assistance, and training to over 30 black female entrepreneurs.
To broaden its mission of serving historically disinvested communities, Access Plus Capital added new positions and launched a Business Services Department in 2021. The new department will offer start-up businesses and entrepreneurs business formation assistance, consulting, credit counseling, and more.
“This was a pivotal year for the Central Valley small business community – a year of recovery, a year of growth, and a year of strategizing for the future. This was a year of repositioning for success,” said Tate Hill. “Looking ever forward, 2021 has set us on a trajectory of growth and success, and we will use this momentum to invest in our community for many years to come.”
About Access Plus Capital
Access Plus Capital (formerly Fresno CDFI) offers financing, training, and asset development services for low- and moderate-income entrepreneurs. Since its inception in 2009, the multilingual staff – experienced in micro-finance, credit counseling, business plan development, and advocacy for low-income families – has helped hundreds of entrepreneurs realize their dreams. Access Plus Capital serves a 14-county region in Central California and is a subsidiary of the Fresno Economic Opportunities Commission (Fresno EOC). More information can be found here: www.AccessPlusCapital.com.