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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, August 17, 2007


NYC DEPT. OF SMALL BUSINESS SERVICES, SEEDCO FINANCIAL SERVICES AND GRAND CENTRAL PARTNERSHIP ANNOUNCE APPROVAL OF NEARLY $200,000 IN LOANS FOR BUSINESSES AFFECTED BY MIDTOWN STEAM PIPE EXPLOSION AND AVAILABILITY OF ADDITIONAL LOANS

Emergency zero-interest loans of up to $10,000 available to businesses affected by the blast

The New York City Department of Small Business Services today announced that it had approved nearly $200,000 in loans to 23 businesses affected by the midtown steam pipe explosion. The zero-interest loans of up to $10,000 for businesses in the former frozen zone that were affected by the steam pipe explosion do not require repayments for the first six months, and applicants receive responses within one week of application. The program is managed by Seedco Financial Services (SFS) on behalf of the City’s Economic Development Corporation and the Department of Small Business Services. The Grand Central Partnership, the area’s Business Improvement District, has assisted in outreach to inform local business owners of the program.

"These loans – combined with the on-site support and assistance of our Business Outreach Team -- are helping businesses get back on their feet after last month’s steam pipe explosion," said Robert Walsh, Commissioner of the Department of Small Business Services. "I encourage businesses affected by the explosion to apply for these emergency loans by visiting the officers on site at Commerce Bank."

The Department of Small Business Services continues to accept applications for loans from businesses affected by the blast. Seedco Financial Services loan officers are on site at the Commerce Bank located at 317 Madison Avenue at 42 Street to help businesses apply for the emergency loans. The loan officers are available Monday-Saturday from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm. To schedule an appointment, business owners can call 212-994-2749. The U.S. Small Business Administration is also on site offering additional loans.

"These loans can make a huge difference for business owners affected by the steam pipe explosion," said Seedco Financial president William Grinker. "We managed a similar program for Queens’ small businesses during the blackout of July 2006. This highly effective program approved 203 loans totaling $1,493,570."

"We’re pleased that many businesses that call the Grand Central neighborhood home are taking advantage of the emergency financing options available to them," said Fred Cerullo, President/CEO of the Grand Central Partnership.  "The coordinated efforts of our public and private partners are clearly helping our local retailers and commercial tenants get back to business as quickly as possible."



  CONTACT:
Kara Alaimo (SBS) 212-513-6318
Molly Hartman (SFS) 212-994-2743
David Roskin (GCP) 212-883-2433
 

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