Emergency Bridge Loan Information
The Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program is currently available to small business owners located in all Florida counties statewide that experienced economic damage as a result of COVID-19. These short-term, interest-free working capital loans are intended to “bridge the gap” between the time a major catastrophe hits and when a business has secured longer term recovery resources, such as sufficient profits from a revived business, receipt of payments on insurance claims or federal disaster assistance.
The Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program is not designed to be the primary source of assistance to affected small businesses, which is why eligibility is linked pursuant to other financial sources.
Note: Loans made under this program are short-term debt loans made by the state of Florida using public funds – they are not grants. Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loans require repayment by the approved applicant from longer term financial resources.
How To Apply
1. Review the eligibility requirements and loan process.
2. Gather the required support documentation.
3. Submit your application online here.
Applicants may also submit a completed application and required documents by mail or courier to:
Florida Department of Economic Opportunity
107 E. Madison Street, MSC-160
Tallahassee, Florida, 32399-4120
For assistance in completing the application, contact your local Florida Small Business Development Center (SBDC) office. To locate your local Florida SBDC visit www.FloridaSBDC.org/locations or contact us toll-free (833) 832-4494.
All 67 counties in Florida.
Applications will be accepted under this program through May, 8, 2020, contingent on availability of funds.
Applications will be accepted by qualified for-profit, privately held small businesses that maintain a place of business in the state of Florida. All qualified applicants must have been established prior to March 9, 2020, and suffered economic injury as a result of the designated disaster. Qualified small business applicants must be a business with 2 to 100 employees.
Only one loan may be made per eligible business. All previous bridge loans received must be paid in full.
Loans will be interest-free for the loan term (1 year). The Interest rate will be 12% per annum on the unpaid balance thereafter, until the loan balance is repaid in full. Loan default is subject to a normal commercial collection process.
Rebuild Florida Business Loan Fund
The Rebuild Florida Business Loan Fund launched in May 2019 to help Florida businesses with recovery and resiliency and is making $40 million in state and federal funds available to help with long term economic recovery. The federal fund will assist existing and new businesses that were impacted directly or indirectly by a disaster to rebuild and expand. Administered by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, the Business Loan Fund will target industries identified by the state as key strategic markets for future growth and will focus on creating and enhancing the diversification and resiliency of Florida’s economy. The Fund will address the current gap in available, affordable capital for businesses by providing longer term loans with higher funding levels at market interest rates.
The Business Loan Fund can provide an eligible business with up to $500,000 in financing for the following purposes:
- Inventory Purchases
- Construction or renovation
- Working capital needs
- Capital start-up loans
- Machinery and equipment purchases
- Equipment financing, and more
For more information on the Rebuild Florida Business Loan Fund please call 833-832-4494 or email FloridaBusinessLoanFund@deo.myflorida.com.