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BhamStrong Partners With Financial Institutions To Expand Access To PPP Loans

By Alabama Newscenter Staff

BhamStrong, the city of Birmingham, Hope Credit Union (HOPE) and Goldman Sachs have partnered to expand access to Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans for small businesses and nonprofits that previously could not apply because they had no relationship with a lender. Small businesses and nonprofits in Birmingham could be eligible for up to $5 million in PPP loans administered by HOPE.

“Small businesses are the backbone of Birmingham’s economy,” said Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin. “We are going to do everything we can to establish partnerships that assist them in this time of need. We know that these funds are competitive and that not every business will receive an SBA loan, but this partnership with BhamStrong, Hope Credit Union and Goldman Sachs puts Birmingham businesses in a better position to compete.”

The U.S. Senate approved a $484 billion bill on April 21 with $60 billion reserved to expedite lending by small- and medium-sized banks or community development financial institutions. The U.S. House still must approve it.

HOPE is supporting small businesses and nonprofit organizations in applying for PPP loans. HOPE and BhamStrong will assist businesses and nonprofits to complete applications and access the loans before federal funding is depleted.

“For 25 years, HOPE has targeted its financial services to meet the needs of those who lack full access to a banking relationship,” said Kendra Key, HOPE senior vice president. “We are proud to work with the city of Birmingham, BhamStrong and Goldman Sachs to support local employers and service providers during this critical time.”

Previously, many businesses could not access the program due to high demand and limited banking access. Goldman Sachs is acting as this initiative’s liquidity sponsor, enabling HOPE to leverage its local network to make available over $5 million in loans.

“Small businesses across Birmingham work tirelessly to serve their neighborhood and care for their employees,” said Margaret Anadu, Goldman Sachs managing director and head of the Urban Investment Group. “In this critical time, we are doing as much as we can, as fast as we can, to get urgently needed funds to small businesses, especially minority-owned businesses that often face greater challenges accessing capital.”

BhamStrong will support HOPE by enlisting Birmingham Service Corps members to provide administrative support. BhamStrong has previously worked to make business owners aware of SBA funding opportunities. The Birmingham Service Corps, recently launched by BhamStrong through a partnership with the city of Birmingham and private donors, pays volunteers on projects that solve emergent and evolving community needs related to COVID-19.

Small businesses or nonprofits interested in applying for a PPP loan may go to https://bhamstrong.com/ppp-hope [bhamstrong.com] to begin the application process with HOPE.