Businesses of all sizes need access to funding in order to keep up with the competition, expand, or create new product lines. If you’re a business in Maryland, you might not be sure where to go to access the funds you need.
Here’s a breakdown of the various options for financing available to Maryland businesses from small business grants to loans in Maryland.
On this page:
- Maryland Small Business Grants
- Small Business Loans in Maryland
- Small Business Investors in Maryland
- Other Sources of Small Business Financing
- Getting Your Business Ready for Financing
- What Kind of Financing Do You Need?
Maryland Small Business Grants
Grants are a great way to fund your business because they don’t have to be repaid. Here are some great Maryland small business grants and Maryland startup grants to consider.
Small, Minority and Women-Owner Business – Video Lottery Terminal Fund
You might be able to get a grant from this fund if you’re a minority or a woman-owned business and you’re located around one of these six Maryland casinos: Maryland Live in Anne Arundel County, Hollywood Casino Perryville in Cecil County, Rocky Gap in Allegany County, Ocean Downs in Worcester County, Horseshoe Casino in Baltimore City or National Harbor in Prince George’s County.
This program provides grants, loans and investments that support initiatives aimed at economic development. Grant providers prioritize initiatives that will use the funds in ways that support business attraction and retention; infrastructure; brownfield redevelopment; arts and entertainment districts; daycares; and local strategic planning. Funds are distributed to specific priority areas.
This grant is for small to mid-sized companies that need money to help with international marketing efforts to increase their exports. The grants provide up to $5,000 towards expenditures such as trade show fees, the translation of brochures, airfare, or website development.
The Maryland Energy Authority provides over a dozen grants and credits for companies looking to upgrade or retrofit equipment to be more energy efficient. Some grants are directed towards specific types of renewable energy, such as the Community Solar Grant, while others are aimed by industries such as the Animal Waste to Energy Grant, which is for agricultural producers.
Maryland Momentum Fund
The Maryland Momentum Fund is designed for early stage companies associated with the University System of Maryland in some way. The fund has up to $500,000 to give out to companies able to get a matching investment within six months.
Learn more: http://www.otc.umd.edu/node/87
Maryland Economic Adjustment Fund
This fund helps businesses modernize their manufacturing, enter new markets, or develop commercial applications for their existing technologies. It is aimed at manufacturers, wholesalers, service companies, and others in the skilled trades. Funds can be used for working capital, machinery and equipment, building renovations, real estate acquisitions, and site improvements.
Learn more: http://www.otc.umd.edu/node/87
Maryland Value Added Producer Matching Grant
This grant is designed to match up to 15% of the USDA’s Value Added Producer Grant (capped at $75,000). This grant isn’t designed for capital purchases but gives businesses in the agricultural industry funding to help with planning and working capital.
Partnership for Workforce Quality
This program provides matching grants for training or support services to small to medium manufacturing and technology companies. The grants are used to increase the skills of workers to help them with adapting to new technologies or production processes.
NIH Small Business Innovation Research
The NIH provides programs that allow small businesses to engage in federal research and development on initiatives where there is a high chance of commercialization. The fund supports technology transfer, particularly within health and life sciences companies.
Learn more: https://sbir.nih.gov/
Maryland Technology Internship Program
The Maryland Technology Internship Programs gives companies funding to recruit and retain top talent through paid internships. The funds are for technology-based businesses and state and local agencies and the funding allows eligible businesses and agencies to hire more interns.
Learn more: https://mtip.umbc.edu/
Small Business Loans in Maryland
Wondering where you can get small business loans in Maryland. Here are some places to get quick loans in Mayland as well as other forms of Maryland small business financing.
Baltimore Business Lending
Baltimore Business Lending is a non-profit lender that promotes community development by offering flexible financing to small business. You can borrow between $10,000 to $50,000 for two to seven years at a fixed rate of 9.25%. Loans can be used for expenditures such as purchasing inventory, supplies or material, equipment purchases or for operating capital. A reasonable credit score with consistent payments over the last six months is required. No specific amount of collateral is required, but personal guarantees are needed from all who have at least 20% ownership.
Learn more: https://baltimorebusinesslending.org/
Headway Capital is a small business lender that allows you to take out flexible lines of credit of up to $50,000 for your business. This lender provides a minimum credit limit of $15,000 and you can repay the amount you take out over a term of 12, 18, or 20 months. The interest rate you’ll pay will depend on your personal financial and credit history.
State Employees Credit Union
The State Employees Credit Union provides business loans to help with expenditures such as financing equipment or business expansion. The Credit Unit offers secured and unsecured financing options including loans with fixed or variable interest rates. Financing terms and interest rates depend on your personal financial and credit history as well as your business. In order to qualify, you must be a member and must have been in business for over 24 months.
Small Business Investors in Maryland
Investors in Maryland may also be willing to support your business. Here are some angel investors and venture funds to consider If you’re looking for Maryland small business financing.
Maryland Casino Business Investment Fund
This fund provides help to small businesses as well as to minority, women, and veteran owned businesses by offering term loans, lines of credit and equity investments. Around 50% of funds must got to businesses in zip codes of targeted areas around certain casinos. The other 50% of funding is available to businesses anywhere in Maryland.
Learn more: https://www.mcbif.com/
TEDCO is a venture capital firm with a number of funds that support Maryland businesses. TEDCO has a builder fund that provides pre-seed capital for start-up companies. The firm also has a seed fund for startups that are slightly more developed as well as a venture fund and a tech transfer fund. Funds are open to businesses in any sector and at any stage of development.
Learn more: https://www.tedcomd.com/funding
Baltimore Angels is an angel investing network that meets monthly in Baltimore. It looks for companies that have working capital and a product already launched but who are looking to scale their business. They are generally mid-stage investors and do not provide funds at a very early stage.
Other Sources of Small Business Financing
You don’t need to find a local lender just because you’re based in Maryland; there are online lenders that offer a variety of products for small businesses. Here are a few of our favorite lenders:
Fundbox is an online small business lender that specializes in incredibly fast business lines of credit – you can get funds the next business day. Fundbox provides loans up to $100,000. Rather than pay an interest rate, you pay a weekly fee for your loan. You’ll pay an origination fee of 4.66%.
Fundbox also offers invoice factoring, which allows you to borrow against invoices due within the next 90 days. To qualify for a line of credit, you must have a business checking account and revenue of at least $50,000.
BlueVine is an online lender that specializes invoice factoring and lines of credit for small businesses. It provides fast cash in as little as 12 to 24 hours. BlueVine lines of credit provide borrowers with up to $150,000. Repayments terms run from six to 12 months and fixed rates start as low as 4.80%.
Invoice factoring also provides borrowers with up to $5 million and an APR of between 15% and 68%. Invoice factoring allows you to essentially borrow against the value of invoices you’re expecting to collect in the next 90 days. It’s easy to qualify for financing from BlueVine – you’ll be considered even if your personal credit is below 600.
Funding Circle is a peer-to-peer lender that provides loans to businesses. Funding Circle provides between $25,000 to $500,000 for anywhere from one to five years. Its loans have fixed APRa between 10.91% to 35.5%. You can get funding in as little as 10 days to two weeks.
>> Read More: Best peer-to-peer lending options
Getting Your Business Ready for Financing
You’ll have to meet different requirements in order to qualify for loans, grants, or other types of business financing.
For example, many online lenders and many local lenders look primarily at the owner’s personal credit to make lending decisions. But building a good business credit score is also important – especially the longer your business is in operation. You’ll also need to have a business bank account as that is often a requirement of getting a loan.
Lenders will also look at other factors when deciding whether to lend to you, such as the number of years you’ve been in business, the number of employees you have, and your annual revenue. And, many want to see a business plan. Grants and angel investors will likely want to know more about your business plan and projected revenue as well.
To get your business ready for financing, focus on improving your business and credit so that lenders and investors will see your company as an attractive investment.
What Kind of Financing Do You Need?
Not all kinds of financing are created equal. Depending on your business, one type of funding might be better for you. For example, a line of credit is best for ongoing capital needs since you can use the funds, repay them and then borrow those same funds again.
Grants and equity investments are great when you need money but won’t be able to make payments on a loan because you are pre-revenue or because you need to reinvest all your profits into the business.
A loan from an online lender is likely better if you have bad credit and are unlikely to get a loan from a bank. It also might be the best fit for you if you need money fast. In contrast, if you are an established business and have good credit, a secured bank loan or a Small Business Administration loan would likely be the best bet since it would give you access to the most favorable terms and the lowest interest rate.
If you’re a small business in Maryland, there are a number of different ways to access financing from investors in Maryland to Maryland small business grants. To figure out which is right for you, consider which you’re going to be more likely to qualify for and what is the best fit for your business.