Georgia Small Business Grants & Loans
Small business owners in Georgia have a variety of options for funding. From small business loans offered by local banks to grants, small business investors, and online lenders, there’s an option for each Georgia-based business’ needs.
You can use a small business loan or grant for a number of things such as purchasing equipment, day-to-day expenses, marketing, construction, and paying down other debts.
Depending on your business and what you’re looking for, there is likely a financing option that works well for your Georgia-based small business.
On this page:
- Georgia Small Business Loans
- Georgia Small Business Grants
- Small Business Investors in Georgia
- Online Small Business Lenders
- Choosing a Financing Option
- Applying for Financing
Georgia Small Business Loans
Georgia has dozens of banks that offer small business loans to companies just like yours. We reached out to a few of them to get information regarding their specific loan options.
We recommend meeting with one of these banks or another local bank to explore options and learn more about eligibility requirements, rates, and terms.
Farmers State Bank
With branches across the state, Farmers State Bank is a good option to explore for small business loans.
They offer a full range of business loans for equipment, inventory, working capital, construction, and expansion.
There is no minimum or maximum loan amount, and they provide adjustable rates based on your business’s revenue pattern.
First National Bank South
First National Bank South is a small community bank that operates in Georgia. Small business loans are a large part of what they do.
Similar to other Georgia banks, there is no minimum or maximum loan amount. Their requirements and loan eligibility will depend on your unique situation.
This bank can provide commercial real estate loans, business vehicle loans, term loans, lines of credit, farm loans, as well as SBA guaranteed loans.
Waycross Bank & Trust
Waycross Bank & Trust offers business loans ranging from $500 to millions of dollars. The rate in which they lend depends on a variety of factors but there is no minimum revenue requirement for their loans.
Their lending options for small businesses include lines of credit, working capital loans, loan sweep service, term loans, real estate loans, development loans, construction loans, United States Department of Agriculture loans, and SBA loans.
Other banks you may want to look into include Georgia Primary Bank, Signature Bank of Georgia, First American Bank & Trust, and Fidelity Bank.
Georgia Small Business Grants
If you’re looking for cash to help jumpstart your Georgia small business, you will also want to consider business grants.
Business grants are funds that are offered to business owners that don’t need to be repaid. This financial assistance is usually awarded by the government or nonprofit organizations, and as you may have guessed, there will be a lot of competition for this “free money.”
In Georgia, there are a few grant options available, including Georgia small business grants for minorities and women.
Rural Business Development Grants in Georgia
According to the RBDG website, grants typically range from $10,000 to $500,000, but there is no maximum grant amount. These grants are awarded to projects that benefit rural areas and towns. Focused on small business, the grant is awarded to companies with 50 or fewer employees and with less than $1 million in gross revenue.
Amber Grant for Women
As stated in the name, this grant is only for women. Each year, 12 grants of $2,000 each are given out and at the end of the year, one of the 12 recipients is chosen for the annual $25,000 grant. The cutoff to apply is the end of each month.
The Warrior Rising grant is available to veterans who wish to become “Vetrepreneurs.” Veterans in Georgia who are seeking nonprofit grants are encouraged to apply to the program, which offers mentoring, training, and funds to cover start-up costs.
FedEx Small Business Grant
This grant is awarded to 10 small businesses each year and amounts range from $15,000 to up to $50,000.
National Association for the Self-Employed
This nonprofit helps business owners grow their businesses with grants worth up to $4,000. You have to be a member of the association in good standing to apply. One grant is awarded each month and applications are reviewed four times throughout the year.
This website is a helpful resource for searching for grants by eligibility, category, agency funding the grant, etc. Start out by searching for grants in Georgia and be sure to check back regularly as grants are posted and removed on a regular basis.
U.S. Small Business Administration
The SBA offers a variety of grants, including ones for women and veterans.
Small Business Investors in Georgia
In addition to seeking a loan through a bank or applying for one of the available business grants in Georgia, small business owners can also obtain funds through investors.
Investors will put money into your start-up or early-stage business in exchange for equity with the hopes of growing it into a profitable venture.
Some of the Georgia-based investors include:
Georgia Investment Network: Boasting the tagline “Connecting Georgia Entrepreneurs and Investors,” this network lists investors who are seeking opportunities to invest in a variety of sectors across Georgia.
Atlanta Tech Angels: As the name suggests, Atlanta Tech Angels are angel investors for companies based in Atlanta and across Georgia. They provide early stage capital for high growth technology companies from numerous industries.
Tech Square Ventures: A seed and early stage venture capital firm, Tech Square Ventures is focused on helping build companies in the Southeast and at research universities.
Atlanta Ventures: Atlanta Ventures helps “launch new companies and equip leaders with ideas, funds, educational resources, and a supportive community.” They focus on B2B companies.
Buckhead Investment Partners: Another venture capital firm, Buckhead Investment Partners offers early stage, late stage, private equity, and seed funding in sectors including technology, healthcare, business services, digital media, and franchising.
Online Small Business Loan Lenders
Although working locally with lenders in Georgia has its perks, you may have more luck with online lenders who offer a variety of products for small businesses. Here are a few of our favorites.
Fundbox was founded in 2012 and offers small businesses a revolving line of credit up to $100K as well as invoice financing solutions.
To apply, you should have a business checking account with three months of transactions or a supported accounting software with two months of activity, a minimum of $50,000 in annual revenue, and a business based in the U.S. or one of its territories.
When you take out a line of credit from Fundbox, you repay what you owe plus a flat weekly fee (over 12 or 24 weeks), and fees start at 4.66%.
BlueVine offers lines of credit and term loans of up to $250,000. Minimum qualifications include a 600 credit score or higher, over six months in business, and $100,000 in annual revenue.
BlueVine also offers invoice factoring. This means that they will give you an advance on your invoices so you don’t have to wait for your customers to pay. Factoring lines have rates as low as 0.25% per week and range from $5,000 to $5 million. The minimum qualifications are 530 credit score or higher, over three months in business, and $100,000 in annual revenue.
>> Read More: BlueVine vs. Fundbox for Invoice Financing
Funding Circle is another option for fast and affordable online small business loans. You can borrow between $25,000 and $500,000 and repay the loan over six months to five years. Rates start at 4.99% for well-qualified businesses.
Applying for the loans takes as little as 10 minutes and you’ll receive a decision within 24 hours. They require a lien on your business assets and a personal guarantee from the primary business owners.
What Kind of Financing Do You Need?
The type of funding you’re looking for depends on your business needs. For example, if you need ongoing capital, then a line of credit may be best because it offers a more flexible method of borrowing.
Maybe you don’t need a loan, but you could really use the cash from your unpaid customer invoices, then invoice factoring, such as the service offered by BlueVine, can help generate cash quickly for your business.
If your business is brand new and you lack the financial history to apply for a small business loan, you could consider a personal business loan. The amount you can borrow will be lower and if you don’t repay the loan, your credit will suffer, but it’s a good route for startups and newer businesses that may face fewer borrowing options.
Getting Your Business Ready for Financing
In addition to conducting research on the type of financing and the best lender to borrow from, you’ll need to take the proper steps to get ready to apply because it’s important to make a strong case for the grant, loan, or investment you are seeking.
You will likely need a business plan; this is your strategy and the purpose for the loan. Lenders will also expect to see your business financial statements. Other items you should prepare to have include your business credit report and personal credit report, income tax returns, loan application history, and any leases or licenses.
Being organized and preparing as much information as you can for the lender will make the loan process go much smoother.
It’s a big task to secure funding for your Georgia small business. With all the options available, it’s important to have a plan and do your research. That way, you can find the best loan, investor, grant, or online lender for your business.