• Evan Shirreffs

Restaurant and Brewery Resources: Funding Sources to get through the Year

Updated: Sep 29, 2020

With most relief funds running on a first-come, first-serve basis and strict qualification requirements, many businesses have found themselves missing out on essential aid. Even those who received aid are close to running out. We have compiled a list of resources and advice to help restaurants and breweries navigate these tumultuous times as North Carolina enters into Phase 2.5 of COVID-19 protocol.

COVID-19 Small Business Emergency Stabilization Loan Fund allows businesses to access financing ranging from $5,000 to $35,000. Features include an affordable interest rate of 3%, terms of up to 10 years, and interest-only payments for the first 12 months. There are no collateral requirements and no application or processing fees. Qualifications for the loan include business premises located within Mecklenburg County, staff of less than 50 full-time employees, and operations for at least 24 months.

If you are waiting for a decision on a pending SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) but need financial support immediately, an SBA Express Bridge Loan up to $25,000 may be an option. This program allows small businesses to access funds while applying for an EIDL. This loan will be repaid in full or in part by the proceeds from the SBA. There is a list of North Carolina SBA District Offices you can contact to get started. There are also other SBA loan options.

In the current proposed budget by Governor Roy Cooper, there is an additional $50 million relief program administered by DOC to support establishments in the hospitality, leisure, and other industries that experienced business disruption due to COVID-19. Relief funds would cover up to four months of rent, mortgage, and utility expenses.

There are other, non-traditional ways to get funds. Those in the industry know that roughly 20% of customers lead to about 80% of business, proving that loyalty is a key factor in creating revenue. With business slow and relief funding hard to come by, there isn’t a better time for businesses to engage in crowdfunding. Giving up a small amount of equity to retain and grow your loyalty base can be monumental to staying afloat during the pandemic. For more information, there is an equity crowdfunding webinar this Thursday, September 10.

Whether it is applying for a loan or grant, seeking alternative ways to raise money, or simply adapting to the new normal through implementation of new practices, every business needs resources and guidance through these times.

Additional Resources:

Extensive List of North Carolina Business Resources

CDC Guidelines

FDA Guidelines/Resources

Interim Guidance for Restaurants

North Carolina COVID-19 Trends

Updated Resources for Q4:

Small Business Resilience Hub

County's Small Business Stabilization Loan

Microbusiness Stabilization Fund

NC Rapid Recovery Loan