Community Futures North Okanagan ready to help startups flourish

Startup loans now available

Aspiring entrepreneurs in the North Okanagan have a reason to be optimistic, thanks to the innovative loan program offered by Community Futures North Okanagan.

The initiative seeks to fill the gap left by traditional financing options, providing alternative sources of funding for individuals looking to bring their business dreams to life.

“They think bank or credit union, and that’s it,” CFNO business analyst Scot McNair says. “But there is the availability of alternative financing out there for sure.”

And that is where Community Futures North Okanagan enters the picture. It plays a pivotal role in determining the strength of an idea and offers plenty of support just to get to the application process.

After an entrepreneur reaches out, McNair and the CFNO team get together with them to have a meeting and discuss what their vision is for their business. CFNO’s business services division will then help to create a business plan and financial projections. This process essentially creates a business case to get a loan.

"That’s really an integral part of the whole loan process," McNair says, "going through that business planning and the financial projections just to try to create or give the idea that there is some sustainability to the business before we launch into a loan.

“I always tell clients that what we’re trying to do is we’re trying to put you in the best possible position to be successful.”

Once the business plan and financial projections have been created, it becomes time to officially apply. Part of the application process, which can be done online, is uploading the business plan and financial projections that have already been discussed with CFNO's business services team.

To be eligible for a loan, you must have a startup or an existing business, be in the North Okanagan and have the ability to repay the loan.

The timeline from application to potential approval spans approximately six to eight weeks, varying with the size and complexity of the proposal. For those seeking micro loans, up to $25,000, the process may be expedited.

If you are in the North Okanagan and have a business idea that you believe can thrive in the region, visit the Community Futures North Okanagan website here to get your dream started.

This article is written by or on behalf of the sponsoring client and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.

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