Monday, April 1, 2013

San Diego Small Businesses are Engines for Job Creation, Reports Accion’s microTracker Small Business Lending Outcomes Study

Conducted in Partnership With the Aspen Institute, Study Highlights Microbusiness Outcomes on Local Communities

By providing loans that average just $11,500, microlender Accion San Diego is significantly contributing to small business sustainability, small-business owner income and job creation, according to Accion’s microTracker lending outcomes study released today. Conducted in partnership with the Aspen Institute, the study highlighted microloan recipients as key engines for job creation and economic stability despite slowdowns in the economy.

Four member organizations of the Accion U.S. Network, the largest microfinance network in the United States, including Accion San Diego, conducted the survey in partnership with Opportunity Fund, to create the largest national sample of microloan borrowers in any lending outcomes study to date. More than 475 businesses participated nationwide, painting a vivid picture of the local outcomes of various microfinance offices around the country.

There was a 31 percent response rate among Accion San Diego clients interviewed. Key San Diego-specific findings include:
  • Microloans contribute to strong, sustainable small businesses. Of small businesses surveyed in 2010 who responded, 100 percent reported that they were still in business in 2012. 
  • Microloans contribute to creating and sustaining jobs. Of businesses reporting employees, each reported employing 4.5 individuals on average including the owner. 
  • Microloans contribute to increases in business revenue. 60 percent of small business owners surveyed reported an increase in business revenue. 
  • Microloans contribute to small business owner take-home pay. 60 percent reported that they had an increase in owner’s draw, with 56 percent reporting that income paid from the business after two years exceeded or met their business goals. 
  • Accion supports small businesses primed for growth and ready to contribute to the local economy. 42 percent of borrowers surveyed reported seeking a loan to substantially grow their business, and 78 percent of reported that their businesses were full-time endeavors. 
  • Accion is a lender of choice for small business owners. 93 percent of borrowers reported that Accion’s products and services completely or mostly met their expectations. 
“These survey results highlight the vital role microfinance plays in sustaining and building local economies,” explains Elizabeth Schott, executive director of Accion San Diego. “During the financial crisis brought on by the recession, microlending has served as a survival and growth mechanism for our local small businesses.”

A whitepaper and infographic highlights the national MicroTest results that echo San Diego-specific findings. This can be found at: http://us.accion.org/microTracker.

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