Small Business Assistance

Individualized Help for Business Start-up, Expansion or Relocation

CEDA staff can help you obtain information on regulatory requirements, market conditions, industry trends, technologies, and more. We can assess your current business situation and make recommendations that will help you capitalize on your strengths. If you are considering purchasing a business we can help review and evaluate the business opportunity.

Business Plan Development, Financial Packaging and Loan Analysis, and Marketing

From determining the capital you need to grow, to successfully marketing your business, a business plan is your blueprint for success. We can assist with plan development or review your plan and suggest improvements to help you reach your business goals.

If additional financing is one of your growth needs, we can help you analyze your financial situation, identify sources of financing, organize the necessary documentation, and assist you in preparing a loan application.

Knowing your customer is one of the hardest parts of business. We offer strategic market analysis to help you clearly understand the characteristics of your customers and develop a solid marketing plan that will not only maximize your current business but also allow you to take advantage of opportunities in new markets.

Small Business Development Center

CEDA serves as a satellite office of the Rochester Small Business Development Center. These services are provided through a partnership with the Rochester Community & Technical College, the State of Minnesota and the U.S. Small Business Administration. The confidential and one-on-one assistance through the SBDC is free of charge and includes:

  • SBA loans
  • Conventional bank financing
  • Local revolving loan fund processing
  • Marketing, business plan development or updating, and training

Microenterprise Revolving Loan Fund

Microenterprise Fund (MEF) loans are designed for start-up, newly established, or growing businesses. Loans will be made available to qualifying entrepreneurs based on established loan fund procedures. Small business loans are to be used for seed capital, working capital, purchases of inventory and equipment, real estate, building renovation and expansion capital.

Microenterprise Fund Business Plan Checklist
Microenterprise Fund Loan Application
Microenterprise Loan Fund Program Fact Sheet

Eligibility Requirements

  • For-profit business that are located in CEDA contracted cities or counties
  • Demonstrated need for financing through a realistic business plan
  • Projected sufficient income to repay interest and principal within a timely period
  • Unable to obtain financing from a traditional lender

Ineligible Uses

  • Debt refinancing
  • Equipment relocation within same structure
  • Routine maintenance
  • Illegal activities
  • Businesses that derive the majority of their income from restaurant or liquor sales.

Loan amount

  • Maximum loan up to $60,000

Terms, Collateral, and Interest Rates

  • Terms are generally six years or less.
  • Value of all collateral will be determined as well as the quality and secondary markets that exist. Collateral can consist of real estate, accounts receivable, equipment and other tangible and intangible assets of value.
  • The fund policy regarding loan interest rates is established by using the prime rate published in the Wall Street Journal.  Consideration regarding the size and risk of the loan will be influential in setting the interest rate but will not exceed 6% fixed.


Loan origination fee, plus cost of searches, credit reports, filing and legal – not to exceed $350.

Contact Ron Zeigler for more information on CEDA’s Microenterprise Revolving Loan Fund.