New NCUA and SBA Partnership Helps Drive Small Business Success

The three-year collaborative effort will advance Northwest credit unions’ use and understanding of SBA lending.

6/4/2019 

The National Credit Union Administration and the U.S. Small Business Administration have launched a three-year effort to unite small businesses and credit unions and expand awareness of SBA programs. Both organizations committed to launch a series of initiatives that will help credit unions use and understand SBA loans and resources. The initiatives may include webinars, training events, and media outreach. 

“The credit union mission is grounded in the concept of providing affordable financial products and services tailored to meet their member’s needs, and that includes helping Americans start or expand businesses,” said National Credit Union Administration Board Chairman Rodney E. Hood in a press release. “Credit unions are well-situated to understand and work with their local businesses and entrepreneurs to extend affordable credit. I want to encourage credit unions to learn more about SBA programs.” 

In the Northwest, credit unions have a tradition of supporting small businesses and seeing the benefits for the community.  

“Offering SBA loans is integral to meeting the needs of the communities we serve and is part of our strategic plan for growth,” said Columbia Credit Union Vice President and Director of Commercial and Business Services, Joe Storm. “This new partnership will help raise awareness of credit unions as providers of business services, which will increase the options available to business owners and help drive growth in the communities they serve. 

The Washington-based credit union is recognized as a preferred lender — a designation that allows it to originate loans more quickly for members. 

Whether the business is a startup, looking at acquisitions, or in need of capital for organic growth, SBA offers great programs to help us meet our members’ business needs,” Storm said. 

At Numerica Credit Union, SBA lending is part of the credit union’s dedication to helping members fulfill their dream of owning a business, and according to SBA Relationship Officer, Mike Shortell, the new collaboration will support those dreams. 

“A core value at Numerica Credit Union is to strengthen our members financial position, Shortell said. “Having the ability to utilize the SBA loan program allows us to invest in our community and meet these needs. 

With over 90 SBA loans on the books and plans to add a dedicated SBA underwriter in the works, Idaho Central Credit Union’s SBA lending program is robust. Commercial Loan Underwriting Manager, Jarom Campbell, is looking forward to the new collaboration and the valuable learning opportunities it will bring. 
 
I was most excited about the training and educational component,” said Campbell. “SBA loans are more difficult to document, both from the lenders perspective and the member’s perspective. 
 
He also sees the NCUA-SBA collaboration as an opportunity to raise awareness for credit union business financing.  

I’m really hopeful that more small businesses will start to understand that credit unions offer the same type of loan programs as the big banks,” Campbell said. “As we continue to allocate more resources in building out our SBA program, we are excited for how the new partnership will support more of our business members.”  

Commercial lending by federally insured credit unions has risen nationallyCredit unions reported over $71 billion in commercial loans outstanding at year-end 2018. According to the SBA, nearly 200 credit unions have participated in the SBA guaranty program since October 2017. 

Editor’s Note: Your Association’s Commercial Services Council offers an opportunity for credit union professionals to meet and discuss business deposit and loan products, services, and strategies, while connecting with other credit union professionals involved in similar programs. Learn more here.