Chase Expands Special Purpose Credit Program for Small Businesses

Chase, SMBs, lending

Aiming to expand credit access to businesses in historically underserved areas, Chase has announced the nationwide rollout of its Special Purpose Credit Program (SPCP).

The program was piloted earlier this year in four cities — Dallas, Detroit, Houston and Miami — and then expanded in July to 21 cities. It’s now available to businesses in majority Black, Hispanic and Latino areas across the country, Chase said Friday (Nov. 18) in a press release.

“Access to capital has historically been disproportionately challenging for small business owners who live and work in communities of color,” Chase Business Banking CEO Ben Walter said in the release. “We want to do our part to create more parity by saying yes to more business owners in these areas so they can grow and thrive, and their communities can benefit in turn.”

Aimed at small business owners who might not be approved for credit or who might receive it on less favorable terms, the SPCP program is designed to extend credit to them, according to the press release.

The program is based on geography and has the goal of providing capital where it is needed most. Customers who have a business located in an eligible area will have their application evaluated under the program, without having to do anything special to qualify, the release stated.

Beyond the SPCP program, Chase reports it has also recently improved the application process for smaller loans, begun rolling out a digital loan application, expanded its free coaching program for minority business owners to 21 cities and launched a new online resource center for entrepreneurs.

“Minority entrepreneurs are rapidly becoming the customer of the future,” Mikal Quarles, head of Chase Business Banking Racial Equity Strategies, said in the release. “We want to help more minority-owned businesses create and sustain wealth long-term.”

With a similar goal, Truist Financial announced in June that it made a $120 million commitment to support small businesses, with a focus on Black, Latinx and women-owned businesses. The pledge includes both philanthropic grants and debt and equity.