Shark Tank gets schooled by a good man

Shark_Tank_Screen_CapWatch Johnny Jordan teach the sharks:




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Small Businesses add a million new workers in 2014

“Small employers added 106,000 workers to their collective payrolls in December, according to the latest round of data issued by payroll processing firm ADP. That’s up from 99,000 added the month before and the fourth consecutive month of employment growth exceeding 90,000.

Over the year, small businesses added more than 1 million employees, averaging monthly additions of 90,000 workers — up from last year’s pace of about 80,000 per month.”

Read more here in the Washington Post

~ want to learn more about small business loans? email Norris Lozano or visit the BusinessUS website

Washington DC may assist more small businesses in the New Year

image_from_bitly_13U3V75“Small businesses are looking for government to function and get a lot more done,” said John Arensmeyer, chief executive officer of the advocacy group Small Business Majority.

A few of the options on the table in this upcoming Congress are:

  1. Reduction in corporate tax rate from the current 35%
  2. Small Business tax deductions
  3. Bonus depreciation
  4. Reduction in paperwork for SBA loans.

“It’s expected to encourage more banks, particularly smaller ones, to make SBA-backed loans, said SBA Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet.”

Read the full article here.

~ Learn more about small business loans by contacting Norris Lozano at www.Bizbank.US

What makes a small business “small”?

Logo_SBAWe are asked all the time “What defines a small business?” and “Why does it matter?”

Many would answer that small businesses are anchors of a community, creating jobs and opportunity in cities and towns across America.

According to the SBA, “The two most widely used standards to qualify a business as small are 500 employees for most manufacturing and mining industries and $7.5 million in average annual receipts for many non-manufacturing industries.”

And to the second question, only a qualifying small business is able to provide certain services to the SBA, and qualifies for certain financing programs from the SBA. These include SBA 7(a) loans, the most common and popular small business loans which are provided by traditional bank, community bank and non-bank lenders, and up to 85% of which are guaranteed by the SBA.

Learn more about SBA loan programs here.

~Norris Lozano, CEO of BusinessUS

For small business, a lot of lending is moving online

Logo_Harvard_Business_ReviewWe’ve read multiple stories recently (here are just a few one, two, three, four…) about small business lenders accomplishing astonishing numbers with online lending platforms. In our research we’re finding that this new money appears easy to get (the online applications and due diligence are relatively simple), but the price is steep (annualized interest rates of up to 70%).

Problem is, small businesses have fewer financing options now then in the last decade. Indeed, small businesses have suffered 3 ways when it comes to acquiring capital they need to grow. According to the Harvard Business Review:

  1. “A decades-long trend toward consolidation of banking assets into fewer institutions is eliminating a key source of capital for small firms….”
  2. “…collateral owned by small businesses lost value during the financial crisis, potentially making small business borrowers less creditworthy today…”
  3. “In the recent recession, small-business sales were hit hard and may still be soft, undermining their demand for loan capital…”
  4. “…. tightening on loan terms, including the Federal Reserve Senior Loan Officer Survey, for small businesses increased at double-digit rates during the recession and recovery, and have eased at just single-digit rates over the past several quarters. Loosening has been much slower and more tentative for small firms than for large firms…” (italics added)

Despite the low barriers to lending, these expensive online lenders are not a sustainable solution to small business borrowing needs. What’s often overlooked in this discussion of small business loans are SBA loans. SBA loans are available from banks and non-bank lenders to American small businesses that “can not get credit elsewhere” (small businesses that are underserved by traditional lenders) at competitive rates (about 6%) with an SBA guarantee.

~ Norris Lozano

CEO of BusinessUS

7 Stages of Small Business Success



Clate Mask, a guest blogger to the Phoenix Business Journal, has written a well-researched set of articles (there are 2, both linked here) outlining the 7 stages of small business success. The articles are full of good data and interesting insights – – take a few minutes:

7 Stages of Small Business Success – Part 1, (Stages 1-3)

7 Stages of Small Business Success, Part 2, (Stages 4-7)

~Norris Lozano, CEO of BusinessUS, a national non-bank lender based in Woodland Hills, CA

Coleman weighs in on the downturn in lending to black business owners

colemanreportbannerlogo082013-2Nice clean summary of the Wall Street Journal article here.

If you recall, we wrote about this trend 6 months ago here.

At that time, I stated the following: “Where there are concerns across the industry about particular markets that are underserved by banks, we see a real opportunity. One of our primary goals is to help provide new capital resources to small businesses owned by minorities, women tribal groups and those located in underserved geographical locations.”

BusinessUS is missioned to provide 60% of our loan volume to underserved markets.

~ Norris Lozano, CEO of BusinessUS

BusinessUS: Fodor’s 15 Best Main Streets in America

bigstock-Main-street-in-american-town-25721456What makes a Main Street “great” in America these days?

Small business lender BusinessUS has an important interest in the question.

After reading Fodor’s sweet soliloquy to Main Streets of yesteryear, one might think it’s

“Friendly neighbors, family-run businesses, and quaint restaurants serving comforting diner fare-“…

Or you might go with: “…small towns [that] have held onto their historic roots and preserved their central thoroughfares…  unique cultural attractions and warm, welcoming communities…”

All good things! But if we peel back the nostalgia and think about Main Streets that might carry us into the 21st Century, here are a few thoughts:Main Street is the face of your community. Care for it.

  • Main Street is walkable. Big wide sidewalks, parking spaces for bikes.
  • Main Street is a mixed bag. Might be retail on the ground floor, and office or apartments upstairs.
  • Main Street is local. Local small businesses have a place on Main Street. Not just the big stores.
  • Main Street is not an outdoor mall. We all need big chain stores for some things, but…
  • Main Street is inviting to everyone. That means plenty of easy parking, mass transit and bike routes to get there, and open doors, lots of ’em.

~ Norris Lozano, CEO of BusinessUS, a national non-bank lender providing loans to American small businesses, including those on Main Street.

Top 5 stories from “Today in Small Business” NY Times blog

NEW white boardToday in Small Business:



SMBs have the opportunity to totally OWN enterprises in 2014.”

In an article titled, “Why 2014 Will Be the Year of the Small Business“, Seamus Egan of the Fox Small Business Center predicts that 2014 will be the Year of the Small Business.

Thank you, Seamus, we couldn’t agree more.

According to Egan, the great equalizer is technology. Small businesses can leverage technology to create entry points to their business which are as large and open to the public as older, well-capitalized companies with a large brick-and-mortar footprint.

“What Egan says here, and I will take it a step further, is that online tools will level the playing field in multiple vertical markets in 2014″, says Norris Lozano, CEO of BusinessUS, a non-bank lender bringing capital to small businesses who cannot get credit elsewhere. “We’ve seen retail, the press, healthcare, logistics, banking, real estate, and others sectors transformed in a matter of a few years – – Technology will continue to bring victory to first movers with thoughtful applications.”

Furthermore, Egan reasons, the shift to mobile has created an additional advantage to the up-and-comers.

There’s really nothing small about small business


The feisty little Billings (nothing small about Montana) Gazette turns a common phrase on its ear (small business, ha!) with some sound statistics and good sense.

“There’s nothing small about small business”.

To wit:

  • According to the Small Business Administration, 54% of all sales happen through enterprises classified as “small business,” and
  • 55% of all people employed have a job through a small business.

Considering the relative importance of “small” business, we should all think about Small Business Saturday – every weekend.

~ Norris Lozano, BusinessUS, Small Business Loans