CornerSquare Community Capital
Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs), which primarily serve entrepreneurs of color, women, and low-to-moderate (LMI) income communities and individuals, have found that they are systemically undercapitalized to meet the ongoing need in their local communities.
CornerSquare Community Capital, launched by the NC Rural Center and Truist, the bank that emerged from the BB&T and SunTrust merger, is a new resource for the CDFI sector. Through this innovative program, 100 percent of the funding will be allocated to racially and ethnically diverse small business owners, women, and individuals in low- and moderate-income communities, with a focus on African American-owned small businesses.
Modeled after the NC Rural Center’s Loan Participation Program, CornerSquare Community Capital will be a long-term, sustainable solution to support CDFIs working with small businesses at the local level. By purchasing a portion of loans made by a CDFI to historically underserved entrepreneurs, CornerSquare will enable the participating CDFIs to increase their lending capacity with their existing capital, ultimately expanding their reach and support to more small businesses in their operating areas. Participating CDFIs should see their own capacity increase by at least 25 percent in the coming years as a direct result of this program.
CornerSquare Community Capital will initially focus on CDFIs located in Truist’s footprint, which includes the following: North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, West Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Indiana, Texas, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Washington D.C.
There are currently six CDFI partners in the program, including ACE, BBIF, LiftFund, NCIFund, Pathway Lending, and Wacif. CornerSquare Community Capital will announce a process shortly after the launch of the program for CDFIs interested in joining the regional network of lenders. CornerSquare will operate as a subsidiary of the NC Rural Center, a nonprofit that has worked for more than 30 years to support small business owners and entrepreneurs in low- and moderate-income communities.
In the meantime, CDFIs interested in joining should contact firstname.lastname@example.org.