Premier CDFI Program

Through the Premier CDFI Program, NJEDA can provide small businesses with loan participations, loan guarantees, and line of credit guarantees in partnership with designated Premier Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs). 
  • Dollar Amount

    Up to $500,000 loan participation, loan guarantee, or line of credit guarantee, NJEDA exposure not to exceed 50% of the loan or line of credit amount.

  • Uses

    Fixed assets or term working capital.

  • Benefits

    For small businesses,
    Lower cost financing

    For participating CDFIs, more flexibility and reduced risk by leveraging NJEDA resources

  • Eligibility

    Must commit to create or retain one new full-time job for every $65,000 in EDA exposure within two years

    Businesses must be in operation for one full year, or three full years for not-for-profits.

    Applicants must meet guarantor credit score and LTV requirements

The New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) wants to ensure that New Jersey businesses have the resources necessary to expand and that our communities have a healthy climate for growth. That’s why we are partnering with Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs), who routinely work with micro-enterprises and small businesses not qualified for traditional bank financing.

Program Details:

In partnership with Premier CDFIs, NJEDA can provide qualified small businesses or not-for-profits financing in the form of a participation, guarantee or direct loan of up to $500,000 of NJEDA exposure, not to exceed 50% of the loan amoint. Financing can be used by businesses for fixed assets or term working capital.

Eligibility Requirements:

Businesses looking to qualify for a loan from a Premier CDFI must*
  • Be in operation for at least one full year, or three years for not-for=profits  
  • Commit to creation or retention of one new, full-time job for every $65,000 of NJEDA exposure within two years.  
  • Businesses/Not-for-Profits must meet minimum Guarantor Credit Score and LTV Requirements, based on the type of      applicant and financing detailed below:
    • Loans: Minimum of one personal guarantor with a credit score greater than or equal to 680, must have minimum historical debt service of at least 1:1.
    • Guarantees: Minimum of one personal guarantor with a credit score greater than or equal to 680, guarantee not to exceed 50% of the CDFI loan amount, length of guarantee not to exceed five years.
    • Not-for-Profits: Debit service coverage of at least 1:1.

Interest Rate and Borrower Fees*:

  • Based on the 5-year US Treasury or floor of 2%, whichever is higher, with basis point additions for credit risk.
  • Application Fee: $300
  • Commitment Fee: 0.5% of the loan amount
  • Closing Fee: 0.5% of the loan amount
  • Guarantee Fee: Up to 0.5% sized to percentage guarantee required, not to exceed 0.5% (for example, 25% guarantee will require a 0.25% fee, 50% guarantee will require a 0.5% fee).

* All fees are non-refundable.

Information for CDFIs:

CDFIs with a successful history of lending and portfolio management may be considered for approval as a Premier CDFI. As a Premier CDFI, a financial institution can receive expedited approvals for participations, direct loans, and/or guarantees.

The NJEDA will request the following information from CDFIs seeking a Premier CDFI designation:
1. Bylaws and Articles of Incorporation
2. List of the Board of Directors and their professional affiliations
3. Organizational chart with description of staff positions
4. Listing of key personnel with resumes
5. Most recent 3 years financial statements (audited, if available)
6. Interim P&L and balance sheet 
7. List of operating revenue sources (including restrictions on amounts, conditions, etc)
8. List of local and private sector support (if applicable)
9. Ongoing funding commitments (if applicable)
10. Lending and risk management policies (including underwriting criteria and loan monitoring procedures)
11. Product description(s) (including rates, terms and allowable uses of loan proceeds) for program(s) that will be utilized for PCP 
12. Three examples of credit underwriting for transactions similar in size and scope to those anticipated to be funded through PCP 
13. Cash/investment management policy
14. Sample loan documents (including application, loan agreement, and promissory note)
15. Current portfolio status report and risk analysis (including aging or portfolio)
16. Tax Clearance Certificate 

For more information on becoming a Premier CDFI, please contact:

Ken Hart
NJEDA Small Business Liaison Officer