CIC Launches STAC

Tucson Small Business to Have Access to $500,000 in Revenue-Based Financing Through Innovative Nonprofit Partnership

Community Investment Corporation partners with Startup Tucson, Common Future / Community Credit Lab to bring $250,000 in investments to STAC Initiative to support small businesses in Tucson.

 January 30, 2023 (Tucson, Arizona) – Local small businesses and business owners that are unable to access traditional commercial loans are getting some help from two local nonprofit organizations. Tucson-based Community Investment Corporation (CIC) and Startup Tucson, are partnering with a national leader in innovative community-based economic development work, Common Future, and their in-house investment entity, Community Credit Lab, to launch a new business financing initiative, Success Through Alternative Capital (STAC), which aims to help businesses without adequate collateral or assets to qualify from traditional loans.

Common Future is investing $250,000 in the pilot program which CIC is matching with $250,000 of its own funds. Startup Tucson, for its part of the partnership, is providing business and entrepreneurial education to support local business owners who access STAC funding. Eric Horvath, Director of Capital Strategies for Common Future explained his organization’s reason for investing in Tucson. “We wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for the trust and belief that we have in CIC and Startup Tucson,” he said. “What really stood out was the dogged determination to innovate and do something different from both organizations and to maximize how much community impact we can have.”

STAC is designed as revenue-based financing (RBF) allowing small businesses to pledge future revenues for an advance of financial capital. Payments can vary depending on how well a business does and its gross revenues after receiving funding. Businesses have higher payments when they are generating more revenues and lower payments when they are generating less revenues, an arrangement that can be especially useful for seasonal businesses.

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The revenue-based approach is being facilitated by CIC’s technology partner, Ned, which will help the lender build capacity and make loan decisions in days rather than weeks. Ned’s end-to-end revenue-based financing platform will enable CIC to streamline applications, qualification and disbursement activities, and then automate revenue-based repayments on the backend.

“Ned has been a fantastic partner for us,” said Danny Knee, Community Investment Corporation’s Executive Director. “Their platform provides efficiencies that allow us to spend our time helping businesses rather than evaluating them.”

STAC is expected to fund 25 local businesses over the next year that the program partners say will be used to purchase essential equipment, purchase inventory, and to meet the cash flow demands of running a business.

“Our economy works well for people with existing wealth,” said Knee, “But the over-reliance on asset-based lending without complementary alternatives makes it nearly impossible for many small businesses, and especially those run by entrepreneurs of color, to get the financial capital they need to grow and succeed.”

Asset-based underwriting is the practice of securing loans with the pledge of turning over a company or personal assets to a lender if a business owner is unable to repay a loan. Entrepreneurs of color have a harder time accessing traditional capital in the U.S. than their white counterparts due to persistent wealth gaps and owning fewer personal and business assets. “We are trying to find ways to make our economy more inclusive,” said Liz Pocock, CEO of Startup Tucson. “We believe revenue-based financing is a way to support emerging entrepreneurs, including entrepreneurs of color.”

Interested businesses should contact Community Investment Corporation through their website:
https://cictucson.org/stac/.

CIC Tucson Offers FREE Financial Literacy Classes

Community Investment Corporation believes in RADICAL access! That’s why we offer FREE financial literacy classes online!

Join us on January 18 and 25 from 6-8pm* as Executive Director Danny Knee and Business Manager Betty Vinall walk through what a Profit and Loss Statement and Balance Sheet are, and how they are crucial to your small business. Bring your questions!

Take advantage of this opportunity for FREE education and access to financial literacy! If you’re not available for these, have no fear. We post every info session and workshop on our YouTube channel so you can learn on-demand.

 

*AZ Mountain Standard Time

The Profit & Loss Statement

The Balance Sheet

Have you ever been asked “How profitable is your business?” and not known what to say? Have you ever tried seeking funding for your business and come to a dead-end when you were asked for your “P&L”? 

We will cover the basics of one of the most important financial documents in business, the Profit & Loss Statement (or “P&L”). 

You’ll learn: How to read a P&L from top to bottom, without getting your eyes crossed by all the numbers. What steps to take to organize your information so you can fill out your own P&L. 

We’ll cover how to do it the old-fashioned way (pen and paper) and using the latest technology (cloud-based software solutions). How to use the P&L to better run your business and seek financing (e.g. a loan, investor, etc.). 

The course is delivered in lecture style. Are you a small business owner, entrepreneur someone just setting up a business or non-profit? The course is designed for those wanting to keep better finances themselves, or those who already have a bookkeeper or accountant but don’t know how to interpret their finances. English literacy and familiarity with basic arithmetic (addition, subtraction) necessary.

Have you ever been asked “How much is your business worth?” and not known what to say? 

The course being offered will cover the basics of one of the most important financial documents in business, the Balance Sheet. 

You’ll learn: How to read a Balance Sheet, and its three primary components: Assets, Liabilities, and Equity. What steps to take to prepare a simple Balance Sheet, so you know what your business is worth. 

The course is delivered in lecture style. Are you a small business owner, entrepreneur someone just setting up a business or non-profit? The course is designed for those wanting to keep better finances themselves, or those who already have a bookkeeper or accountant but don’t know how to interpret their finances. English literacy and familiarity with basic arithmetic (addition, subtraction) necessary. 

Meet the Teachers

Danny Knee has two decades experience in the public and nonprofit sectors, including 14 years in executive management. He has experience as an entrepreneur and small business owner and was named one of Tucson’s “40-Under-40” in 2007 for contributions to his profession and the community. 

Betty Vinall has been with CIC since 2004, has 35+ years of experience in bookkeeping, and is owner of Balanced Books LLC, a bookkeeping business specializing in working with nonprofits and small businesses.

2022 In Review

Celebrating our biggest year yet!

What a year it has been indeed!

While it feels nearly impossible to condense an entire year into one newsletter, we couldn’t close 2022 without taking a look back at the highlights from this year.

Join us in celebrating CIC’s biggest year to date, and we’re just getting started!

A national leader in eviction prevention

Over the course of 2 years, we were involved in a collaborative effort to administer federal funding to prevent evictions related to the economic impact of the pandemic throughout all of Pima County. As one of the most efficient programs in the nation, CIC and our partners facilitated disbursement of all of the City of Tucson’s ERA 1 and ERA 2 funds, as well as more than $22.5 million of additional reallocated funding from the state. In June of this year, we transitioned the Eviction Prevention Program to Pima County.

Since the start of the program we distributed $64+ million in rental and utility funding, assisted over 13,500 households, landlords and helped 30,000 residents remain in housing.

We owe much of the success of the program to our dedicated and willing community partners. Private, public and nonprofit sectors as well as private citizens came together selflessly to care for one another in the face of the unprecedented challenges of the pandemic. Thank you: City of TucsonFamily Housing Resources, Sunnyside Foundation, Catholic Community Services, ISDA, Tucson Urban League, Inc., Primavera Foundation, International Rescue Committee, Interfaith Community Services, Chicanos Por La CausaValley Assistance Services and Compass Affordable Housing.

Read our IMPACT REPORT

Expanded the Mortgage Credit Certificate program statewide

For 30+ years, the Mortgage Credit Certificate (MCC) program has been administered by CIC, and its sister organization, Family Housing Resources. The program reduces the cost of owning a home by allowing first-time homebuyers to claim up to $2,000 of their annual mortgage interest as a federal tax credit – each year and every year they live in their homes. This means that MCC’s can save homeowners up to $50,000+ over the life of their mortgages!

CIC has issued 7,000+ certificates to date, saving Arizona homeowners millions of dollars and this year, we expanded the program statewide! We look forward to empowering future homeowners throughout the state of Arizona. Check out this short video that explains how this important program works.

Learn more at: cictucson.org/mcc

The BIPOC Community Managed Loan Fund for Small Business Owners continues to grow!

Since launching the BIPOC Community Managed Loan Fund program, we’ve received 100+ applications, with requests for $700,000+ to help long underserved entrepreneurs of color in Southern Arizona grow their businesses and thrive. 

We were thrilled to share that in 2022 we fundraised over $100,000 to support this program. The revolving fund that started with just $2,700 in donations from CIC’s own staff  now sits at $380,000 and has helped 26 small businesses in Southern Arizona.

This funding is critical to our mission’s success and helped us get closer to our goal of building the fund to $1 million by 2025.

Check out this short video to learn more about this program.

CIC Tucson was named Social Impact Champion of the Year!

We were honored to be recognized by the selection committee of the Tucson Metro Chamber Copper Cactus Awards as this year’s TEP Social Impact Copper Cactus Champion. This is the second time in three years, CIC has earned this recognition and it is one of the only times that a nonprofit has been honored with a Copper Cactus Award three years in a row (we were named the regions Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Champion in 2021 for the launch of our BIPOC Community Managed Loan Fund).

While we don’t do this work for the awards, this was a special moment to stop and celebrate everyone who has contributed to making our programs worthy of recognition; most notably, the community’s best and most accomplished social service agencies who partnered with us for the Eviction Prevention program. Thank you to the City of TucsonFamily Housing Resources, Sunnyside Foundation, Catholic Community Services, ISDA, Tucson Urban League, Inc., Primavera Foundation, International Rescue Committee, Interfaith Community Services, Chicanos Por La CausaValley Assistance Services and Compass Affordable Housing

This program would not have been possible without the deep commitment of the highly skilled staff at the nonprofit organizations & government entities.

2022 brought an amazing year of success and impact for CIC, none of which would have been possible without the collaboration and support of trusted partners. We resolve to fill the coming year with opportunities and prosperity for all residents of Southern Arizona.

– Danny Knee and the CIC Team

BIPOC Loan Fund Is Now OPEN!

We are excited to announce that the BIPOC Community Managed Loan Fund is now OPEN!   

This is a truly one-of-a-kind fund where BIPOC (black, indigenous people of color) business owners in Southern Arizona can apply for 0% interest loans, ranging from $500 to $10,000 and 5-year terms.    

This fund gives access to business owners who are often left behind by traditional economic resources, and our goal is to provide economic power and collective wealth for this underserved community.  

And, the most important part, all loan decisions are made by a committee of BIPOC business owners and community leaders! 

Applications opened Friday July 1, 2022 and we’ve made some changes to the loan this year. 

We’re excited to announce that this loan has shifted into a REVOLVING loan fun! This means the fund is open all year round! No need to rush and apply. We want to make sure that these resources are available when your business needs them.

We are holding an info session Wednesday, July 13 for you to learn more and get your questions answered. RSVP below:  

* recording will be sent to registrants 

Please share this valuable resource with your community, especially BIPOC business owners in Southern Arizona!

This fund was founded by the community FOR our community.  Thank you to our amazing partners – blaxfridayStartup TucsonTEPCoxBBVAWomen’s Foundation for the State of ArizonaUnited Way of Southern ArizonaYWCA Southern Arizona, and Tucson Metro Chamber

We hope to see you there!

– CIC Team and the BIPOC Loan Fund Committee