About The LDC
Lending for Opportunity
The LDC, established in 1979, is a non-profit small business lending organization whose mission is to offer opportunity by assisting the growth and development of microenterprise and small business concerns, thereby creating and retaining employment opportunities in its service market. As a federal and state certified CDFI, the LDC provides flexible business lending products, along with extensive technical assistance, to women-owned, minority-owned, low-income, veteran, and other underserved business owners in Berkeley, Charleston, Colleton, and Dorchester Counties in SC.
The LDC’s business strategy includes providing technical assistance that promotes an understanding of specific capital needs and essential requirements to sustain and grow a business enterprise. It utilizes its flexible loan products to address the financial needs of the borrower and identifies the potential job retention and creation stemming from an investment in the small business. Then, once a business receives financial assistance, the LDC provides extensive post-loan support to help to ensure success.
The LDC does not compete with the traditional commercial lending sector, but instead, it works with banks and other financial institutions. A business may qualify for a LDC loan only if conventional financing is not available and the business meets the LDC’s minimum credit criteria. However, a goal of the LDC is to graduate its borrowers to traditional financing, and so, it not only receives referrals from the banks and other financial institutions, but it also refers entrepreneurs and small businesses to those resources.
Micro and small businesses in the LDC’s service area have utilized its loan programs for start-up, expansion, or business continuation financing. Loan products have been used for virtually any legitimate business purpose to include inventory and equipment purchases, leasehold improvements, working capital needs, real estate improvements and, in some cases, the purchase of real estate. As a result of assistance from the LDC, women-owned, minority owned, low-income, veteran, and other underserved businesses have been able to access capital they would not normally have had available to them.
Over its history, the LDC has accomplished its mission with internal underwriting, local credit decision-making, in-house servicing, and long-standing partnerships it has forged with the local lending community, its funding and technical assistance partners, other community resources, and the on-going relationships with its current and former borrowers. As a result, the organization has assisted hundreds of businesses and impacted thousands of employment opportunities.