Louisville has a robust community of partners and resources to help small businesses start and succeed.
Louisville Metro Department of Economic Development administers local incentives and loan program, which assists with start-up capital, working capital, capital improvements to commercial and public properties, and helps low and moderate income individuals start a microbusiness or improve a existing one. Businesses can apply for loans from $500 to $100,000. (502) 574-4140
The Office of Entrepreneurship provides guidance and support to start-up operations statewide and assists existing small business with growth opportunities. The office also guides the Cabinet’s extensive resources for small and new businesses, as well as innovative and high-tech companies, through funding initiatives, marketing and sales assistance, and small business advocacy.
The Navigate Enterprise Center is a subsidiary of Jewish Family & Career Services, which focuses on assisting low-income individuals, immigrants, and refugees in pursuing entrepreneurship as a viable means of achieving economic self-sufficiency. This is accomplished through business education, mentorship, financial literacy training, and access to micro-lending programs and partnerships.
LEAP is a public-private partnership that aims to amplify the greater Louisville region’s entrepreneurial ecosystem. Working with an active network of partners, collaborators, and resources, LEAP’s mission is to create and sustain an inclusive entrepreneurial ecosystem with programming and access to resources for startups.
Kentucky Small Business Development Center offers training and consulting services, including one-on-one management consultations, training workshops, market research, loan packaging help, and assistance with financial projections.
The SBA provides counseling services to help start and grow a small business, as well as a full array of loan, contracting, and exporting programs.
SCORE is a volunteer, nonprofit organization of counselors who provide free and confidential business counseling to both prospective entrepreneurs and existing small business owners throughout the Louisville metropolitan area.
Capital Access Corp. allows clients to tap in to long-term, fully fixed, fully amortized business loans for real estate and/or equipment at a low interest rate via the SBA 504 loan program from the U.S. Small Business Administration. The program allows the client an added benefit by requiring as little as 10 percent equity in to the total project costs. The program focuses on existing business and start-up businesses, from acquiring existing real estate or even ground up construction, machinery & equipment as well as development and professional fees.
Access Ventures' Growth Loan is a character-based loan of up to $35,000 with no collateral or credit requirements. The nonprofit's loan is designed for small business owners who are unable to access capital through traditional underwriting methods.
The nonprofit provides business loans to start-up and existing businesses and offers help with business planning and technical assistance.
Family Business Center is a community where certain businesses can exchange strategies and experiences and talk about challenges that are unique to family-owned businesses.
LHOME is a community development financial institution formed by the leadership of Jewish Family and Career Services and the Metropolitan Housing Coalition with the aim to provide greatly needed low-interest, credit-building loans to low-income Louisvillians.
Buy Black Lou provides a network and directory of black-owned businesses for individuals and businesses looking to increase their supplier diversity and procure goods and services from black-owned businesses.
Click here to downloand a detailed brochure on Louisville Small Business Resource Ecosystem.