Loans Totaled $13.7M to 235 Small Businesses in Colorado in FY18


Denver, Dec. 27, 2018 – Colorado Enterprise Fund (CEF) announced its 2018 fiscal year-end results as of September 30 with the largest lending year ever and unprecedented demand for its small business loan programs and technical assistance services. “The robust economy in Colorado has spurred strong business optimism, and entrepreneurs need capital to start and grow their businesses,” says Ceyl Prinster, CEO and President of CEF. “We are here to help.”


Both the dollar volume and the number of loans closed in FY18 made it a record year for CEF, a certified Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) and nonprofit lender. CEF loaned $13.7M to 235 businesses in Colorado, growing annual borrower volume by 34% and annual loan dollars by nearly 50%, compared to FY17. CEF currently services loans and provides coaching to a portfolio of 611 borrowers. 


A total lending summary for CEF’s FY18, October 1, 2017 through September 30, 2018, includes:

  • 1,068 Jobs created or expected to be created
  • 648     Jobs retained
  • 3,066 Hours of business technical assistance delivered (valued at $370,000)
  • 46%   Woman-owned business
  • 9%     Veteran-owned business
  • 48%   Low-income borrowers
  • 26%   Borrowers who report being of ethnic and racial minorities


“2018 was a phenomenal year for CEF,” said Ms. Prinster. “Partnerships helped us not only reach — but surpass — our annual goals, organizationally and financially. We expanded our access to business support and loan referral services with new online portals that strengthen our ability to serve more small business borrowers in Colorado. We also took significant steps to build our own capacity to advance our strategic initiatives by expanding our team with new leadership, as well as operational and financial expertise. CEF is in a great position to further increase its impact in 2019.”


Key Accomplishments for FY18 Include:


  • In FY18, CEF launched its Veteran Access Loan Opportunity Resource (VALOR) program, which provides discounted loan rates and extended terms for military veterans and Gold Star family members. In its first year alone, the loan program deployed $1.85M to help 22 U.S. military veteran borrowers start or grow their businesses. These loans created or retained more than 185 jobs in the state. Bank of America was the lead investor funding the initiative with $2.2 million with additional support provided by a grant from Xcel Energy. View the press release here
  • CEF was honored with the MLK Business Award in 2018 for exceptional community service and commitment to the social responsibility values of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • Ceyl Prinster, President and CEO of CEF,  received the 2018 David E. Bailey Award as Small Business Advocate of the Year from the Denver Chamber of Commerce.   
  • In FY18, CEF dispersed 111 Microloans totaling $1.7M, which has helped create and/or retain 445 jobs. CEF has partnered with multiple counties and entities in the state to provide these loans. The most recent press release about the Weld County Microloan Fund is available here.
  • CEF investors made big impact in food oriented development and healthy food access through its Healthy Food Funds Fundprogram.
  • CEF led a $10.5 Million redevelopment project to provide jobs, healthy food access and community impact. The partnership between CEF, Colorado Trust and the Colorado Housing and Finance Authority (CHFA) provided gap financing on a Montbello grocery-anchored shopping center in a food desert. Click here for the press release on this project. 


“Goals for FY19 include building on successes of current programs and expanded efforts to support minority businesses and place-based strategies to achieve impact in targeted communities,” says Ms. Prinster. “We will be focusing on strategies that deepen our impact with the most disadvantaged communities in Colorado to ensure that everyone participates in the economic prosperity of our state.”  


About Colorado Enterprise Fund
Founded in1976, Colorado Enterprise Fund (CEF) provides loans up to $500,000 to finance small businesses and start-ups unable to obtain funding through traditional banks. CEF has dispersed over $80 million in startup and growth capital to over 2,300 businesses, and created or retained more than 18,000 jobs in the state. A non-profit Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI), CEF is based in Denver with lending services available statewide. For more information, visit:


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