SBA offers information on small business loans, grants, bonds and other financial assistance. Find out which method of financing is right for you!Learn More about Small Business Loans, Grants, Bonds & Other Financial Assistance
While SBA does not make loans directly, you can find a local lender who can help you with your loan application. You may also speak directly with a local SBA representative by calling .
Events & Workshops
Explore events by this district office.
Select a date, or a date range to see events.
For Small Business Owners
Resources in Your Area
Resources from Our Office
Restaurateur Scott McVean originally established Pain du Monde Cafe in a small Balboa Island storefront in 1988, selling fresh-baked bread, muffins, and delicate pastries. Over the years Pain du Monde Cafe, known also as PdM Cafe, expanded to four locations, all of which are located in Orange County, California. In 2013, McVean decided it was time to grow the brand and establish Pain du Monde Kitchen, a full size, free standing, three meal restaurant. Despite being in business more than 25 years, Scott had never applied for financing from a bank. However, working with Commerce National Bank's Nancy Russell, was able to get the project funded, establish his new location, and hire approximately 55 employees in the process.
According to McVean, "This is a totally different business than my other four locations, and the capital requirements are much more intensive. I couldn't have done it without SBA and Commerce National Bank." Pain du Monde's newest location, in Irvine, has now been open more than 5 months. McVean, for his part, is enjoying serving the community around his newest location. "It has a different feel than my other locations. People stay here after their meals and chat. We've got a lot of families that come in."
Horatio Castillo and Maria Chavez were born and raised in the rural state of Michoacán, Mexico. Both came from traditional families that valued hard work and authentic food. Independently, they migrated to southern California as young adults seeking a better life. After a few years in the hustling environment of Orange County, Horatio and his uncle took an eighteen-hour bus ride to Caldwell, Idaho, in search of employment opportunities in 1994.
“I still remember getting off the bus the morning we arrived, looking around and thinking, wow, this is it,” recalled Horatio. “The open space, beautiful mountains and rural lifestyle was just what I was hoping for.”
It didn’t take long for Maria and her two daughters to join Horatio in Idaho. Both Horatio and Maria found employment and began to save money. “Our wages were not high, but we settled in and made ends meet,” said Maria.
Horatio worked at a number of different jobs while Maria started working at a local Mexican restaurant. There, she learned about the food service industry and the local clientele.
In 2005, Horatio and Maria had saved enough money to open Janitzio Restaurant in Caldwell. “Because our money was limited, we worked tirelessly to remodel and open our original location in a very small, modest building,” said Horatio.
It wasn’t difficult for Maria to come up with a menu since she often prepares traditional recipes that have been passed down from her mother and grandmother.
“I like to prepare food that is healthy and in the style found on Janitzio Island in Lake Patzcuaro,” stated Maria. “This is very near where I grew up and it makes me happy to share this food with our customers.”
It didn’t take long for Janitzio to develop a loyal following as many of their patrons would stop by for lunch. And although Horatio continued to work a second job, the restaurant was able to be modestly profitable.
Earlier this year, knowing that their current lease was not going to be renewed, Horatio started looking for a new location for Janitzio. It didn’t take long for him to find a potential site across the street from their current location, so Horatio visited his banker in hopes of getting a loan for the restaurant.
“Although our business is profitable, our banker recommended we get additional business training from Micro Enterprise and Technical Assistance Counselor Carlos Duncan,” said Horatio. “Carlos was so helpful in guiding us to the many resources to assist our business. He introduced us to Sylvia Morrow of Certified Development Company Capital Matrix who helped us get an SBA 504 loan.”
Once again, Horatio and Maria went to work remodeling the new location to meet their individual needs. After several months of long hours, Janitzio opened in April of this year.
“We are a small, family-owned and operated business,” said Horatio. “With the help of the SBA loan, we are confident we will be able to continue to offer a clean, friendly restaurant where people can come and eat authentic Mexican food.”
After 25 years of working as a retail executive for the May Department Store, Macy’s, and G. Fox & Company, Beth Bolton decided it was time to launch a second career. She had always dreamed about owning a bakery/coffee shop, but the truth was that her knowledge of the industry was limited and she needed to learn more about the full range of bakery products before undertaking such an endeavor.
Could she do it? Her impetus came from her children who supported and encouraged her to follow her dream so that later in her life she wouldn’t have to ask herself, “what if”?
With her support system in place, she challenged herself to fully understand the full range of bakery products as well as the nuts and bolts of owning and operating a bakery. Beth enrolled in the Connecticut Culinary Institute and got a job working at a bakery in Simsbury which gave her the confidence and experience to bring her dream to fruition. And after noticing an empty storefront on Park Road in West Hartford many times, she decided that this was the perfect location for her business.
Beth opened her bakery in 2009 at the height of the Great Recession but nevertheless managed to build a customer base. She also reached out for help with payroll, state and employment taxes, variables she couldn’t control. Then after two years in business, disaster struck when Hurricane Irene paid a visit in 2011 and the bakery was without power for nine days just three weeks before the busy Thanksgiving holiday. Luckily, an SBA disaster team was sent to Connecticut in response to the hurricane and Beth received an SBA disaster loan to help maintain operations.
At about the same time, Beth called SBA Lender Relations Specialist Bill Tierney to discuss cash flow issues. Bill put her in touch with HEDCO, a Connecticut-based SBA micro lender, that not only assisted with technical questions but ultimately lent the business $113,000 to purchase equipment for the bakery.
Despite all the adversity “A Little Something Bakery” continues to operate because of its high quality products and the fact that it offers “a little something” in addition to excellent baked goods to each of its customers.
Another strength is that Beth is committed to training her nine employees on every facet of the business like counting money, excellent customer service, daily goals, creating new products , resourcefulness and avoiding waste. The cost of supplies has risen almost 100% since she opened the doors so that she wants her employees to be diligent about production costs.
Beth believes in asking for help and in addition to HEDCO, has been counseled by the West Hartford SCORE Chapter and the Women’s Business Center where she is in the process of rewriting her business plan. She recently joined the Park Road Business Association to increase networking opportunities.
A Little Something Bakery is an all-American bakery that offers cupcakes, pies, brownies and muffins. Her long-term goals are to purchase the building the business now rents and to provide outdoor seating for her customers.