You Can Get a Loan

Headlines paint a bleak picture, but startup capital is available to the prepared.
Magazine Contributor
2 min read

This story appears in the September 2008 issue of Start Up. Subscribe »

In 2002, Alan and Lara Baldwin entered a bank and left nearly $500,000 richer and fully armed to take their full-scale event production company to the next level. Before then, their main focus was making ends meet, operating Landmark Event Services Inc. for a year with personal capital and credit cards. The bank's cash infusion let them finally invest in their New York City-based business: They bought trucks and equipment and moved into an 11,000-square-foot warehouse.

But Alan and Lara, both 40, didn't go to the bank empty-handed that day. Prior to asking for money, they sought out free counsel from their local Small Business Development Center and prepared a solid business plan with five-year projections. "We were able to really clearly define what we needed and why and how we were going to proceed with the business," says Lara.

Getting a bank loan in 2008 isn't as easy as it was five years ago, but Nick Crocetti, a director at CBIZ Accounting, Tax and Advisory Services, says it's still doable--with the right amount of preparation. "If you have a formal, written business plan, that goes a long way in convincing the bank you're very serious about your business venture," he says. Banks also look at entrepreneurs' previous experience in the industry and the collateral they're willing to place on the line. Crocetti also suggests finding an accountant, attorney and insurance professional, and demonstrating your seriousness to the banks by forming an advisory board of experienced industry professionals.

For the Baldwins, seeking a loan has meant gaining the opportunity to design and execute unforgettable events for high-end clients like Microsoft--and not-too-shabby projected 2008 sales of $2.5 million.

More from Entrepreneur

Grow Your Business at Entrepreneur LIVE! Join us on Nov. 16 in Brooklyn, NY, to learn from legends like Danica Patrick and Maria Sharapova, pitch our editors, meet with investors, and potentially walk away with funding!
Register here

One-on-one online sessions with our experts can help you start a business, grow your business, build your brand, fundraise and more.
Book Your Session

Whether you are launching or growing a business, we have all the business tools you need to take your business to the next level, in one place.
Enroll Now

Latest on Entrepreneur

My Queue

There are no Videos in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any video to save to your queue.

There are no Articles in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any article to save to your queue.

There are no Podcasts in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any podcast episode to save to your queue.

You're not following any authors.

Click the Follow button on any author page to keep up with the latest content from your favorite authors.