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BCL of Texas Launches Dallas Small Business Diversity Fund with $1 Million Investment from Comerica Bank

Comerica Bank

Comerica presented BCL of Texas with an additional $50,000 grant in support of its small business technical assistance programming at today’s launch event. Brandon Jones, Comerica Bank North Texas External Affairs Manager; Beatrice Kelly, Comerica Bank Director of Community Development Lending; Rosa Rios Valdez, BCL of Texas President and CEO; Derric Hicks, Comerica Bank South Dallas Business Banking Group Manager and Omar Salah, Comerica Bank Director of Small Business Banking

BCL Texas Check Presentation
Comerica presented BCL of Texas with an additional $50,000 grant in support of its small business technical assistance programming at Wednesday’s Dallas Small Business Diversity Fund launch event.
(Left to Right): Brandon Jones, Comerica Bank North Texas External Affairs Manager; Beatrice Kelly, Comerica Bank Director of Community Development Lending; Rosa Rios Valdez, BCL of Texas President and CEO; Derric Hicks, Comerica Bank South Dallas Business Banking Group Manager and Omar Salah, Comerica Bank Director of Small Business Banking

Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) BCL of Texas will offer loans ranging from $10,000-$75,000 to traditionally underserved businesses. The Dallas Small Business Diversity Fund, a $1 million investment from Comerica Bank, will specifically target Dallas County women and minority-owned businesses with two or more years in operation.

An additional $1 million investment from Comerica will be allocated to BCL’s Growth Fund for larger business loans in its Texas target market.

BCL of Texas Check Presentation - 2
Comerica presented BCL of Texas with an additional $50,000 grant in support of its small business technical assistance programming at Wednesday’s Dallas Small Business Diversity Fund launch event. BCL of Texas Leadership Team and Comerica Bank External Affairs Team
(Left to Right): Brian K. Marshall, BCL of Texas Director of Entrepreneurship; Vanessa T. Reed, Comerica Bank National External Affairs Manager; Raquel Valdez, BCL of Texas Chief Operating Officer; Rosa Rios Valdez, BCL of Texas President and CEO; David R. Arriola, BCL of Texas Lending Specialist and Brandon Jones, Comerica Bank North Texas External Affairs Manager.

“We know that many minority businesses are often self-funded due to lack of access to capital, and a key component of our mission is to provide emerging small businesses opportunities to expand their operations,” said Rosa Rios Valdez, BCL of Texas President and CEO. “We want to help level the playing field with this fund.”

Loan applicants must be a minority, woman or veteran business owner located in a rural, redevelopment or low- to moderate-income area. In addition, the Dallas Small Business Diversity Fund includes a strategic coaching component with BCL’s Entrepreneurship Specialists. Prior to completing a loan application, prospective applicants are asked to schedule a financial readiness assessment to ensure they have a strong and organized path to growth. Approved borrowers will receive no-cost business coaching throughout the life of the loan.

Comerica Bank Welcome_Cassandra_McKinney
Comerica Bank’s Executive Director of the Retail Bank Cassandra McKinney welcomed guests at the Dallas Small Business Diversity Fund launch event.

“At Comerica, we remain committed to investing in CDFIs with more flexible underwriting and collateral requirements than traditional lending programs,” said Omar Salah, Comerica Bank’s Director of Small Business Banking. “As the leading bank for business, it is imperative that we raise expectations in all the communities we serve by partnering with nonprofits like the BCL of Texas because they are playing an integral role in closing the access to capital gap for minority and women-owned businesses.”

In 2021, Comerica made a three-year, $5 billion small business lending commitment to support communities disproportionately affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. As of June 30, 2022, Comerica has assisted more than 8,600 small businesses and funded $2.4 billion (49% of goal) of the loan commitment.

BCL of Texas_Comerica Bank Small Business Roundtable Panel
Moderator: Derric Hicks, Comerica Bank South Dallas Business Banking Group Manager
Participants (l to r): Rosa Rios Valdez, BCL of Texas President and CEO Omar Salah, Comerica Bank Director of Small Business Banking Martha Banda, Event Stems – BCL of Texas client / Dallas Small Business Diversity Fund Launch Event Host [Martha’s Story on bcloftexas.org’s site]

To schedule a Dallas Small Business Diversity Fund consultation visit bcloftexas.org/DDF, or contact BCL of Texas Loan Officer David R. Arriola (darriola@bcloftexas.org; (214) 688-7456 x126).

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