Investment opportunity available to help Lyon County businesses

December 10, 2013

Many Emporia businesses have benefited from the Incentives Without Walls (IWW) and Trusler business loan programs administered by Emporia Main Street. These types of opportunities will soon be available to small businesses and entrepreneurs in all of Lyon County through the new E-Community (Entrepreneurial Community) Program. The Lyon County E-Community has been authorized to raise $75,000 for its local loan fund by Dec. 31, 2013.

The tax credits are purchased through Network Kansas, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. The Lyon County E-Community has been authorized for $100,000 in tax credits to establish the initial business loan fund of $75,000.

The Emporia State University Small Business Development Center has worked with many Emporia businesses who have used these funds to make their projects possible. Two popular local businesses, The Sweet Granada and Mulready’s Pub, have used the IWW/Trusler zero-interest programs in conjunction with conventional business financing to help fund their business start-up and/or expansion. 

The Sweet Granada used the program once when the business started in 2004 and again in 2013 for the expansion into their new space at 805 Commercial St., a move that allowed the business to house production and retail sales in one location.  

According to Sweet Granada owner Kim Redeker, “It’s a win-win. We were able to invest more money into our storefront to make it a more vibrant, appealing space for not only the improvement of our business but also the downtown district. These revolving loan programs are a wonderful tool for entrepreneurs and communities.” 

“When these types of zero-interest loans are available, they work in conjunction with banks to provide the amount of financing that is really needed to properly capitalize a business,” said Lisa Brumbaugh, regional director of Emporia State University’s Kansas Small Business Development Center.

That’s how Rick and Amy Becker, who started Mulready’s Pub at 717 Commercial St., this past May, used the IWW/Trusler loan program. 

“We feel very fortunate to have accessed the zero-percent interest loans through Emporia Main Street to open Mulready’s. Having this funding available allowed us to vastly improve our storefront as well as purchase the equipment we needed to get started. As we established financing for the pub it was very beneficial for the bank to know we were using the zero-interest loans, and it really allowed us the flexibility to make Mulready’s what it is.” 

Clearly, these types of loan funds are valuable assets to the numerous small businesses that have made use of them.  There is always a need for more small business funding and the Lyon County E-Community will play an important role.

Tax credits must be sold by Dec. 31. For more information, contact Emporia Main Street at (620) 340-6430 or by email to main.street@emporia-kansas.gov.

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