Brooklyn Chamber and NYBDC Awards $430,000 in 'Brooklyn Fund' Loans to Two Local, Immigrant-Owned Businesses
Innovative Partnership Provides Funding For Startup and Growing Small Businesses in Brooklyn
The Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with New York Business Development Corporation (NYBDC), has approved the first two loans under The Brooklyn Fund to local, immigrant-owned businesses.
The $10 million Brooklyn Fund, which has a particular focus on veteran and immigrant owned businesses, offers small loans up to $350,000 backed by U.S. government guarantees through the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Community Advantage and Small Loan Advantage Programs. The recipient of the first loan – totaling $120,000 – is the popular Brooklyn café, Hungry Ghost. Located at 781 Fulton Street in Fort Greene, this is the third café owned by Justin Boshell and Murat Uyaroglu. The other loan recipient is Edible Arrangements, which has been approved for a $310,000 loan.
"Small businesses are the lifeblood of our economy so it’s wonderful to see more mom-and-pop stores opening and expanding in Brooklyn," said Carlo A. Scissura, President & CEO of the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce. "I really can't think of a better way to help immigrant business owners than with the chance to attain low-interest loans. Congratulations to Hungry Ghost and to our other loan recipient Edible Arrangement. We wish them all continued success!"
"Providing funding to small businesses in New York’s neighborhoods is critical to growing our economy and bringing jobs into our communities," said Pat MacKrell, NYBDC's president and CEO. "The Brooklyn Fund targets immigrant and veteran entrepeneurs and helps get their businesses up and running and hiring more people."
The $10 million fund offers small dollar loans up to $350,000 backed by U.S. government guarantees through the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Community Advantage and Small Loan Advantage Programs. As part of the overall fund, money has been set aside for the "Brooklyn Immigrant Fund," which is open to all foreign-born residents who operate a business in the borough.
"We have planned our expansion in Brooklyn very carefully," said Hungry Ghost Partner/CEO Murat Uyaroglu. "We want each location to have its own personality and reflect the clientele and neighborhood it serves. We are not a franchise. We are small business owners who want to help and support our community. Thank you to the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce and NYBDC for approving our loan application and allowing us to open a location that serves the Fort Greene and Clinton Hill community."
Hungry Ghost’s other locations are on Flatbush Avenue in Prospect Heights and in the recently remodeled BRIC House.
"We are pleased to see immigrant businesses owners opening new stores in Brooklyn and specifically on Fulton Street in Fort Greene and Clinton Hill. Hungry Ghost is a wonderful coffee house that serves our community well. A big thank you goes to the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce and NYBDC for helping immigrants fulfill the American dream by growing and expanding their businesses," said Fulton Area Businesses Alliance Executive Director Phillip Kellogg.
As part of the loan dispersal, the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce and NYBDC donated one percent of the total amount distributed – a total of $4,300 – to the Caribbean American Chamber of Commerce & Industry, a non-profit organization that helps immigrant entrepreneurs.
"On behalf of the Caribbean-American Chamber of Commerce & Industry, I would like to thank the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce and NYBDC for their generous contribution. This donation will go a long way in helping with our mission. The Brooklyn Fund is a wonderful program that helps immigrant businesses," said Dr. Roy Hastic, President and Founder, Caribbean American Chamber of Commerce & Industry.
The Brooklyn Fund is offered as an option for eligible applicants through the NYC Business Solutions Center at 9 Bond Street in Downtown Brooklyn. For more information about The Brooklyn Fund click here>>