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For Area Small Businesses, A Chance To Pitch Lenders For Funding

(Entrepreneurs meet with potential lenders at an event in King of Prussia sponsored by the Small Business Administration.  Credit: Paul Kurtz)

(Entrepreneurs meet with potential lenders at an event in King of Prussia sponsored by the Small Business Administration. Credit: Paul Kurtz)

Paul Kurtz Paul Kurtz
Paul Kurtz is a Philadelphia native who has been working as a reporter...
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By Paul Kurtz

KING OF PRUSSIA, Pa. (CBS) — The federal Small Business Administration played the role of matchmaker today with a business and lender meetup in King of Prussia.

Call it speed-dating, business style.

SBA lender relations specialist Don Jefferson says borrowers get 15 minutes to make their pitches to lenders.

“We have 42 lenders here that are interested in making loans to small businesses, and just about every table  has borrowers sitting down with the banks, talking about loan projects,”  Jefferson said.

And dozens of entrepreneurs showed up at the Radisson Hotel to sit down with those lenders.  People like Lorraine Keller,  CEO of a firm called Technical Vision, which makes canes equipped with intense, ground-focused lighting that might help keep the infirm and the aged from falling.

“We’re looking for 350 thousand dollars,” she told KYW Newsradio today.  “And that will get us to commercial production of our first product, which is a support cane with lighting — we call them streetlight canes.  And that will pay for working capital, administrative costs, and inventory.”

If the initial 15-minute pitch strikes a chord, the lenders and borrowers schedule a second, more detailed interview.