Bad Girl Ventures
, Cincinnati's women-focused micro-lender, has narrowed down the finalists for its upcoming business class.
BGV, a nonprofit created by local attorney Candace Klein, is based on the micro-financing model of international organizations like Kiva where small loans from individuals are bundled together. Ten women-owned startups will undergo a six-week entrepreneur curriculum where they will learn the building blocks to starting a business and be responsible for submitting a business plan, WBE application, etc. Classes are open to anyone who needs training; you can find the class schedule here
The organization's first class finished up last fall and the model has proven attractive to small and large investors alike. Originally Klein had planned on offering one $25,000 loan to one entrepreneur through a competitive process. This time around, BGV has 150K in loans to award businesses that meet loan criteria. Major investors include 5/3 Bank and the Columbus-based Economic and Community Development Institute
. Klein is also talking to US Bank and a couple of other lenders that are also looking at investing.
"We accept much lower credit scores than a traditional lender. We believe that a lot of women have struggled with the economy and divorce, which has affected their scores temporarily. The lenders like us because we can bring the women in, train them and help them raise their credit scores, making them more likely to be a successful candidate for loans in the future," Klein said.
This class encompasses a wide variety of entrepreneurs, from a towing company to a couture bridal and evening wear designer. Take a peek at the new class:
- Allison Kulage, Bare Knuckles Marketing, online marketing
- Jessica Goldberg, Roomations, connects freelance interior designers with homeowners
- Lyn Bucalo, Serket Jewelry, high fashion, custom jewelry
- Andrea Brady, Empowering Innovations, web and mobile application designed to help children overcome fears
- Lindsey Lusignolo, Lindsey Lusignolo, couture evening and bridal wear
- Robin Gentry McGee, Just Great Foods, natural, healing foods producer
- Temeca Jones, Funducate, fun and educational merchandise for children
- Amanda Kelly, Amanda Kelly Salon, salon for the young professional in downtown Cincinnati
- Rebecca A. Huber, The Rutile, fine jewelry concierge service
- Dinita "Dee-Dee" Smith, TriState Towing, family owned towing company
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