Univest Bank and Trust Co. (Univest) is partnering with local banks to participate in a loan program for small Philadelphia businesses impacted during this time of unprecedented challenges for the local economy. To date, Univest, Bryn Mawr Trust, Customers Bank, OceanFirst Bank and WSFS have committed $650,000 to fund the Micro-Loan Recovery Program.
These corporate citizens of the Philadelphia community are coming together to help address the needs of the city’s small businesses. With many already under financial strain due to forced closures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the dire situation for businesses was compounded by recent civil unrest. Many businesses in Philadelphia are devastated structurally and financially.
Businesses within the City of Philadelphia in need of financial assistance can apply for a 10-year low-interest-rate loan ranging from $3,000 to $25,000. By providing accessible loans for business owners, the goal is to keep businesses open and operating in Philadelphia.
“We’re proud to come together with our industry peers to do what’s right and support economic opportunity in the city,” said Michael Fitzgerald, market president of the East Penn and NJ Division of Univest Bank and Trust Co. “Being a small business owner is challenging enough without the additional obstacles imposed by a pandemic and the destruction of property we saw in the city. These funds could be the difference-maker for businesses to reopen and keep doors open. We hope that despite the current economic downturn, we can help Philadelphia businesses survive and thrive in the years to come.”
Philadelphia City Councilmember At-Large Allan Domb has championed the initiative, stating, “The Philadelphia lending community quickly came together to respond to customers’ needs during the COVID-19 pandemic, and the Micro-Loan Recovery Program is a reflection of how the community is going above and beyond to keep our local businesses afloat.”
Borrowers will benefit from having 0% interest in the first year and 1% interest in years two through 10. Businesses that have been in operation for 12 months are eligible to apply and no annual financial reporting is required. Full details of the program and the application can be found at https://www.univest.net/micro-loan-recovery-program. Completed applications and questions can go to PhilaMicroLoan@univest.net or to Jackie Fitzpatrick, senior vice president and area manager for Univest Bank and Trust Co. at 215-799-4722.