When banks say no, KC businesses seek out alternative lenders

When small businesses from under-banked, low-income neighborhoods are denied loans from banks, many of those businesses are turning to alternative lenders, like the nonprofit community development financial institution AltCap in Kansas City.

AltCap is giving many of those rejected companies opportunities to grow, and the city wants traditional banks to take notice.

AltCap, which began originally as the Kansas City, Mo., Community Development Entity, has the flexibility to consider the stories and the people behind the loan applications, said Carmen Lopez, AltCap’s director of lending.

AltCap was created to distribute federal new market tax credits beginning in 2008, distributing some $158 million into Kansas City businesses, AltCap President Ruben Alonso III said.

AltCap has since raised other funds to provide alternative sources for small businesses and has made some $4 million in microloans.

“We’re not competing with banks,” Alonso said. “We help show (banks) opportunities.”

Read more: Kansas City Star

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