New Loan Programs to Help Minority- and Women-Owned Businesses

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine and Lt. Governor Jon Husted announced two new loan programs to help minority- and women-owned businesses grow and boost the Ohio economy.
The new Women’s Business Enterprise Loan Program and Ohio Micro-Enterprise Loan Program were both priority initiatives of the DeWine-Husted Administration included in the 2022-2023 operating budget, which was passed in June by the Ohio General Assembly.
“Helping our minority-owned and women-owned businesses thrive helps Ohio’s economy,” Governor DeWine said. “These businesses are vitally important to our success, and these new loan programs will provide capital infusion to help them get on their feet and build for the future.”
“Ohio’s economy supports a broad landscape of opportunity in a variety of industry sectors,” Lt. Governor Husted said. “The loan programs will give a boost to minority- and women-owned businesses, providing them resources to invest in their companies so they can grow and create jobs.”
  • Women’s Business Enterprise Loan Program: These loans will be offered at or below market rate and currently are up to 3%. The minimum loan amount is $45,000 up to a maximum of $500,000. Loans will be repaid within 10 years for equipment and machinery and 15 years for owner-occupied real estate. Businesses must be 51% ownership and control by women or be certified as a Women-owned Business Enterprise (WBE).
  •  Ohio Micro-Enterprise Loan Program: These loans will have a 0% interest rate. The minimum loan is $10,000 up to a maximum of $45,000. Loans will be repaid within five years for permanent working capital and seven years for equipment. Businesses must be certified as a Minority Business Enterprise (MBE) or a Women-owned Business Enterprise (WBE).
The loan programs will be administered by the Ohio Department of Development (Development) through the Minority Business Development Division. They join four other capital programs offered by Development: the Ohio Minority Business Bonding Program, the Ohio Minority Business Direct Loan Program, the Collateral Enhancement Program, and the Ohio Capital Access Program.
“Governor DeWine and Lt. Governor Husted have made clear since the start of their administration that everyone needs to share in Ohio’s success,” said Lydia Mihalik, director of Development. “These loans will provide a bridge to success for our many minority- and women-owned businesses across the state.”
Information about the loans, including program guidelines and fact sheets, can be found online at Minority.Ohio.Gov. Click on Access to Capital on the left side of the webpage to find a list of all of the Minority Division’s financial resources. For more information or to start the application process, email MinorityBizFinance@Development.Ohio.Gov.
Businesses also can reach out to a Minority Business Assistance Center near them for help with the application process and assistance with business planning, access to capital, and state business certifications. For more information about the MBAC network, visit MBAC.Development.Ohio.Gov.