Representatives from participating banks, community leaders and board members of the Lawrence Partnership gathered today at Eastern Bank’s “Branch of the Future” on Common Street in Lawrence to announce the expansion of its loan fund. The event was streamed live on Facebook.
Founded less than a year ago with the goal of making loans to small businesses in the Lawrence Community, The Lawrence Venture Loan Fund is expanding its capital base from $1 million to $2.5 million. The fund was initially created with resources from four area institutions — Eastern Bank, Enterprise Bank, Merrimack Valley Credit Union and TD Bank — with backing from the City of Lawrence. It has already committed nearly $500,000 to local businesses, resulting in the creation of over 100 new jobs. The success of the fund has allowed six new financial institutions to participate, growing the total capital pool to $2.5 million. The new participating institutions are Align Credit Union, Digital Federal Credit Union, Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union, Pentucket Bank, Reading Cooperative Bank and The Savings Bank.
The City of Lawrence provides a 10% loan loss reserve to the expanded fund while Mill Cities Community Investments, the administrator of the Fund, will continue to be its primary lender. Those interested in learning more should contact Mill Cities at MCCInvest.org or 978-970-0600, Ext. 5.