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Million Dollar Challenge Press Release

Press Release
For Immediate Release

Hudson County Launches Million Dollar Challenge to Help Small Businesses
Lending initiative designed to reach businesses that can’t get conventional financing

The Hudson County Economic Development Corporation today announced the launch of “The Million Dollar Challenge”, a new small business lending initiative aimed at increasing access to capital for the county’s business owners and entrepreneurs.

Working in partnership with UCEDC, a nonprofit small business lender and training organization, the Hudson EDC is committed to bringing $1 million of fairly priced capital to viable start-ups and growing small businesses that would otherwise be denied conventional lending. Financing will be provided by UCEDC through its SBA loan products.

“Access to capital is the lifeblood of small businesses but too often, hard-working business owners and entrepreneurs can’t get the financing they need,” says Thomas DeGise, Hudson County Executive. “We want to give Hudson County’s small businesses a fair chance to start, grow and thrive and I’m pleased to see that the Hudson EDC has taken on this challenge with such an innovative response.” Loans of $5,000 to $5 million will be made available to start-up and established businesses throughout Hudson County. Hudson EDC and UCEDC staff will work with strategic partners such as business/professional associations, chambers, business incubators, and other public and private entities to promote the program and assist businesses in applying.

“The Million Dollar Challenge is all about helping businesses of all sizes and types get a fair chance to succeed,” says Michelle Richardson, Hudson EDC Executive Director. “It doesn’t matter if you’re a sole proprietor working from home or the owner of a generations-old manufacturing business – you are a vital part of our economy and community.”

There are many reasons why a sound small business may not be able to secure conventional lending, says UCEDC President Maureen Tinen. “Just being less than two years in operation can automatically disqualify you from getting a bank loan. Issues like insufficient collateral or not having enough of your own equity to contribute are other typical roadblocks. Our job is to look for the “yes” and we encourage the county’s small businesses to contact us.”

Small business owners and entrepreneurs can learn more about The Million Dollar Challenge by visiting the Hudson EDC website at .

About the Hudson County Economic Development Corporation

The Hudson County Economic Development Corporation (EDC) is a not-for- profit corporation organized to encourage and assist business to remain located in the County of Hudson and to attract new business to locate in the County of Hudson.  The EDC offers assistance to businesses in Hudson County in the areas of: access to working capital financing via a partnership with UCEDC; access to a trained workforce via collaborative efforts and partnerships with the Hudson County workforce system.  Technical assistance programs relate to activities such as: counseling and referrals; capacity training to support business growth strategies; governmental and private sector procurement; real estate site selection; and demographic research.


UCEDC, a nonprofit economic development corporation, is dedicated to promoting New Jersey’s small businesses with resources tailored to every stage of business growth.  Since our inception in 1977, we’ve provided over $24 million in loans to start-up and established businesses through a variety of SBA programs and other funding sources.  With its free counseling, bid matching services, and contracting workshops, our Procurement Technical Assistance Center(PTAC) has helped local businesses win over $2 billion in awarded government contracts.  And thousands of entrepreneurs and small business owners have attended our workshops and seminars, giving them a strong foundation for success.

Media Contacts:

Michelle Richardson Executive Director, Hudson County EDC
201-369- 4370

Robin Preisler, Director of Business Development, UCEDC
908-527- 1166

Jim Kennelly, Director of Communications, County of Hudson
201-369- 4386