Programs for Small Business
Small businesses are an essential component of a strong local economy.  The City's small businesses not only create well-paying jobs, but also deliver vital goods and services, generate sales tax revenue, and contribute to the unique character and livability of neighborhoods.

Cincinnati Programs for Small Business

The City of Cincinnati recognizes the importance of a thriving small business community. We are committed to the growth and success of our city’s small businesses and the city’s Economic Development Department has instituted multiple programs that offer assistance to those enterprises, including loans and the innovative Small Business Enterprise Program.

Small Business Loans

The City has two loan funds available for uses such as permanent working capital, purchasing real estate or equipment, and refinancing existing debt:

  • The MicroCity fund provides small business loans up to $35,000 and is used to encourage expansion by providing “gap” debt financing.
  • The Grow Cincinnati fund provides capital for fixed assets, working capital and eligible refinancing to small businesses located in Cincinnati. It is designed to encourage expansion and to increase the capacity of the city’s small businesses by providing gap debt financing and access to technical assistance.

Funding through these programs is available to successful growing or emerging small businesses that meet the underwriting requirements and are located within the City of Cincinnati.

For more specific information about these loan programs, download the respective brochures or contact us.

Small Business Enterprise Program (SBE)

The City of Cincinnati’s Small Business Enterprise Program (SBE) provides procurement opportunities to small businesses. The City remains committed to growing opportunities for small businesses so that the entire community benefits. We are hopeful that more small businesses will participate in the City’s SBE purchasing process. For more information on becoming certified as a Small Business Enterprise (SBE) with the City of Cincinnati, contact the Department of Economic Inclusion.

Small Business Resource Navigator

In order to help assist small businesses with finding the resources they need, we have created an interactive resource navigator to serve as a guide. Click here to visit the resource navigator.


Eric Denson