Trying to grow your small food enterprise, but not sure how? We can help.
We are in the process of assembling partnerships with fellow organizations around the state. These partnerships will help build a support ecosystem for small, local enterprises and allow us to better serve the needs of entrepreneurs in our area.
What does that mean for local business owners and entrepreneurs? Well, it means that we can help you take that next step towards growing your business – in a mindful, logical way with an eye on sustainable growth. If this doesn’t really make too much sense to you, don’t worry you’re not alone. Here are a couple examples to help demonstrate what we’re talking about:
“Kiva Zip provides 0% interest loans to financially excluded and socially impactful entrepreneurs in the United States and Kenya. We aim to expand financial opportunities for entrepreneurs, reduce the cost of capital and enhance connections between lenders and borrowers.”
We could not think of a better partner. The best part is their recent focus on local food producers. They offer 0% loans up to $5,000 for small businesses, but that limit is raised to $10,000 for local food producers – farmers, ranchers, etc…
“We are a group individuals in Central Texas that believe in the importance of local, sustainable agriculture. We are active supporters of Slow Money and want to support small food enterprises with some of our money. Club members have each contributed to a common fund so that we can loan money to local, sustainable ag enterprises that we believe will make for a better community.”
This group of local, regular folks decided that they could multiply the impact of the money they had to invest in local businesses by working together. This group of every day folks has loaned almost $40,000 to half a dozen local small businesses through their investment club. It is the dream of Slow Money Austin to see dozens of clubs like these making loans all over Central Texas.
“We can, as individuals and working together, support and build a more robust sustainable regional food system by investing in for-profit entrepreneurs creating “good”, “clean”, and “fair” products and services. Just as we make conscious decisions as consumers to support green, organic, and local vendors, so we can make similar decisions as investors.”
Austin Foodshed Investors is a network of accredited investors, born out of the energy and beliefs of Slow Money Austin. Its founders looked at the overall lending space and saw a gap between traditional lending options – banks, federal loans, etc.. – and the world of private investment – angel networks and venture capital. They decided to fill that gap with patient capital by looking for small food companies that want to grow slowly/sustainably, ones without a required exit or sale of the company to return the investment and companies wanting to build relationships and community.