ECDI is celebrating big milestones as the organization closes its 1,000th loan during their decade-long support of Ohio entrepreneurs.
On March 28th, ECDI awarded Cleveland client Jodi Rae Santosuosso the loan for her new venture, Daily Press, an organic juice bar on Detroit Road in Cleveland.
“Our clients are our number one priority,” says VP of ECDI Cleveland, Eric Diamond. “Without them, ECDI would not be able to invest, educate and innovate with small businesses and people such as Jodi. As an Army National Guard Veteran, yoga instructor, and all-around foodie, she represents the diversity of ECDI’s clients and a perfect fit for our mission to invest in people to create measurable and enduring social and economic change right here in Ohio.”
ECDI started in Columbus in 2004 before expanding to Cleveland in July 2012 and Toledo in May 2013.
“We’re now a statewide SBA lender,” ECDI Marketing & Communications Manager Douglas Craven says. “We have such a great reputation that’s spread across the state.”
ECDI has made a significant impact in each of its markets. Since 2004 ECDI Columbus has deployed $16 million worth of loans. Making a quick start in Cleveland, ECDI has closed over $1.5 million in loans in less than two years. In Toledo, the organization is carving their niche as a resource, helping clients get loan ready and work on their business plans.
In total, ECDI has been instrumental in creating over 4,500 jobs and 2,500 businesses.
“These jobs have all been sustainable,” Craven says. As businesses become established and expand, even more jobs are created. Craven cites an example of how these businesses can grow. With the help of ECDI, Josephine Talieh opened her own business, Easton Healthcare. She was the sole employee to start, but her business now employs over 100 people.
ECDI provides a catalyst for job creation in a non-conventional format. Their loan services bridge the gap for businesses and individuals that might be unable to receive traditional loans.
ECDI’s loans range from $500 to $350,000. Craven says ECDI sees a lot of variety in their clients and the uses for the loans. Equipment-based loans are currently very popular, but others use the funds for entrepreneurial ventures and other operating costs.
The organization supports loans for new and established businesses. Many of their other services can help develop a new business into a loan-ready client.
“We love the phase one clients, too, who come in with an idea on a napkin,” Craven says. Established businesses seek continued support because of the value-add ECDI brings through marketing and outreach efforts – services a traditional banks don’t offer.
ECDI provides, “The tools, technical assistance and support for these businesses to succeed,” Craven says.
For more information, visit ecdi.org.