Chase Donates $3 Million to Opportunity Fund to Help Small Businesses

Grant Will Help Entrepreneurs Create Green Businesses and Much-Needed Jobs

SAN FRANCISCO--()--Chase has awarded a $3 million grant to Opportunity Fund, the Bay Area’s leading non-profit small business lender. The organization helps thousands of families create sustainable small businesses through microfinance and other programs in economically-challenged neighborhoods.

“This grant of private loan capital will be the largest in Opportunity Fund’s history, doubling our capacity to help Bay Area entrepreneurs, their families, and our neighborhoods thrive,” said Eric Weaver, founder and CEO of Opportunity Fund. “With each Opportunity Fund loan helping a business owner keep or add an average of 2.4 jobs, this additional loan capital will go a long way towards developing our green economy and contribute towards the Bay Area’s economic recovery.”

Opportunity Fund is using the capital to launch a”GreenforGreen” loan program, which helps small businesses reduce their energy costs and provide eco-sustainable and green products and services to businesses all over the Bay Area. By funding thousands of local businesses, the program will boost an additional $15 million into the local economy as these loans generate spending, wages and tax revenue, Weaver said.

Chase has partnered with top-tier CDFIs for more than 20 years and remains a national leader in financing CDFIs. Over the last three years, Chase provided over $1 billion in loans, grants and investments to CDFIs and their affiliates.

“This is one more way we are helping small businesses survive and grow in this challenging economy,” said Peter Barker, Chairman of JPMorgan Chase in California. “Our grant ultimately will help give small businesses access to the credit they need to create jobs and continue to develop momentum in our thriving Bay area green economy.”

Chase recently earned the Number 1 ranking among Small Business Administration lenders nationally and surpassed its commitment to lend $10 billion to small businesses in 2010, helping more than 250,000 small businesses.

Chase presented a $3 million check to Opportunity Fund’s Weaver at 10 a.m. January 28th at Gentle Parking’s North Beach Garage, an Opportunity Fund client whose parking enterprise now employs over thirty people from low-income neighborhoods across the City. David Chiu, President of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors and Senator Leland Yee were among the dignitaries attending the presentation.

Opportunity Fund is a community-based nonprofit lender that since 1995 has helped thousands of Bay Area families create sustainable small business through microfinance and asset building programs. Through its programs, Opportunity Fund has directed over $178 million in community investment into economically challenged neighborhoods and has improved the lives of over 12,000 households. Find out more at www.opportunityfund.org

Chase serves 13 million people through more than 800 bank branches and 2,900 ATMs in California. Chase is part of JPMorgan Chase & Co., which serves consumers, businesses, corporations and government clients through its J.P. Morgan and Chase brands. Information about JPMorgan Chase & Co. is available at www.jpmorganchase.com.

Contacts

Caitlin McShane
Opportunity Fund
408-512-2211 (o)
415-225-8855 (c)
caitlin@opportunityfund.org
or
Eileen Leveckis
Chase
415-315-7930 (o)
415-271-5474 (c)
eileen.leveckis@jpmchase.com

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Contacts

Caitlin McShane
Opportunity Fund
408-512-2211 (o)
415-225-8855 (c)
caitlin@opportunityfund.org
or
Eileen Leveckis
Chase
415-315-7930 (o)
415-271-5474 (c)
eileen.leveckis@jpmchase.com