Joshua began a web-based used/new clothing company in 2008. In 2009 he took out his first Kiva micro-loan through ACCION USA. In only seven months since his first loan he has already increased his sales by 50%, opened up a storefront, and is now married.
Joshua works full-time in his business and has been able to increase his income. He will continue doing online sales but would like to focus on his storefront and designing a new website.
Joshua will be using his second micro-loan to purchase a new computer that will help him process orders more efficiently, and to purchase new inventory.
About U.S. Microfinance and ACCION USA:
Have you ever thought about how the cute new café on your corner or the salon you frequent every month got the financial resources to start their business? Chances are, they drummed up support from their friends and family, dipped into their personal savings, used a high-interest credit card, or all of the above. An estimated ten million small businesses in the U.S. face difficulty obtaining loans from traditional banks, even prior to the current “credit crisis”. Microfinance institutions, like ACCION USA, support these “unbanked” small businesses by giving them access to fairly-priced capital and business education.
Small businesses also help stabilize low- to moderate-income neighborhoods and rebuild our economy through income growth and job creation. Self-employment provides workers with a way to increase their incomes, support their families, and strengthen their communities. As unemployment rises in the U.S., more and more people are turning to self-employment and start-up enterprises as a way to take control of their economic futures and provide employment opportunities in their communities. The need for support of small businesses in the U.S. is great, and it is one that ACCION USA has been striving to meet since 1991.