Coastal Enterprises, Inc. (CEI) is a private, nonprofit Community Development Corporation and Community Development Financial Institution with its roots in the civil rights movement. The organization provides financing and support for job-creating small businesses, natural resources industries, community facilities, and affordable housing. CEI's primary market is Maine, but its financing programs are also available in northern New England, upstate New York and beyond. CEI has provided financing of more than $461 million to over 1900 businesses.
- CEI offers a variety of loans and equity financing for most businesses and housing
- Development Fund: targets innovative, job-generating natural resource based companies, and other quality employers throughout Maine for financing of up to $500,000 for job-generating Maine ventures.
- Enterprise Fund: allows financing up to $50,000 for small, micro, and self-employment enterprises.
- Housing Fund: provides pre-development and construction financing for rehabilitation and new construction projects that serve Maine residents with low incomes. Loans are up to $500,000 with flexible repayment terms.
- New Markets Tax Credits: financing program established by Congress in December 2000, gives individual and corporate taxpayers the opportunity to receive a credit against income taxes by investing in qualified investment entities.
- CEI Investment Notes: socially responsible investment opportunity for high-net-worth individuals and institutions.
- Venture Capital: financing is available through two for profit subsidiaries of CEI, CEI Ventures, Inc. (CVI) and CEI Community Ventures, Inc (CCVI).
- SBA 504: small business loans are packaged by CEI in guaranteed debentures up to $750,000 or 40% of the fixed assets of a business. These loans finance the need for property, land and equipment.
- Targeted Loan Programs: of CEI include the Fisheries Loan Fund, Sustainable Agriculture Loan Fund, Child Care Loan Fund, Assisted Living, and Green Fund.
- Overall the majority of those served by CEI live in rural areas of Maine. Consistently, CEI
borrowers are about 50-50 male and female. Although Maine is the least diverse state in the
nation, CEI serves a disproportionate share of minorities: 5 percent African American, 2 percent
Asian/Pacific Islander, 2 percent Native American, and 1 percent Latino.
- The people and
businesses that CEI finance are as diverse as the funds themselves. Examples include refugees or
immigrants who want to start over in a new country and fishermen and farmers who adopt sustainable
harvesting methods to create new markets for underutilized species or specialty produce.
- CEI has had a tremendous impact since its inception. Currently it has 547 loans/investments
outstanding and has more than $590 million of capital under management. Throughout its history CEI
has financed nearly 2,000 businesses with $461 million worth of loans invested, and has counseled
more than 28,900 businesses and individuals. Through financing, it has helped preserve over 23,000
jobs. In addition, CEI has created/preserved over 1,200 units of affordable housing.
Having lived in apartments all her life, Tina was eager for a change and ready to work for it. For Tina and her daughters, having their own home also meant a new sense of accomplishment and control. Tina started saving. She completed courses on budgeting, credit, and homeownership as part of an IDA program and reached her goal of $4,000. With help from CEI and other local entities, Tina has become a proud first-time homeowner. Full Story