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Breaking The Bank

Nonbank lenders are pulling ahead in small-business financing. Here's what playing the field looks like.

This story appears in the March 1998 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

It's February 1992. You've raised more than $350,000 to get your manufacturing business off the ground, and the launch is such a success that by May, all your cash is tied up in receivables--and you need more money to keep growing. Where do you turn for help?

That's the question 33-year-old Ken Seiff asked himself when his company, Pivot Rules Inc., faced the scenario described above. "I needed to open letters of credit for future [clothing] lines, but I couldn't afford them," recalls the New York City sportswear manufacturer, who needed to pay his Hong Kong-based suppliers.

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