LOS ANGELES— Chase has awarded a $5 million grant to VEDC — the Valley Economic Development Center– to generate the loans small and medium-sized businesses need to sustain and expand their businesses and to hire more Californians.

“VEDC is proud to partner with the JPMorgan Chase in providing desperately needed funding during this severe credit crunch,” said Roberto Barragan, President of VEDC, the largest non-profit lender to small businesses in the Los Angeles area. „This grant will enable us to help even more small business owners in cities and rural areas throughout the state of California.”

The $5 million grant will help VEDC launch a statewide small business lending program — the Chase Small Business California Loan Program — that could generate $50 million in new loan capital. Over the next three years, VEDC plans to make direct loans to 200 businesses that could create at least 2,000 jobs. VEDC will lend $50,000 to $500,000 to small businesses that:

  • Generate $500,000 to $10 million in annual revenue;
  • Employ five to 100 people;
  • Operate in low-and moderate-income communities and
  • Employ low- and moderate-income residents.

“Chase continues to expand how it is helping small businesses, which are the engine of our nation’s economic growth,” said Peter Barker, Chairman of JPMorgan Chase in California. “In 2010 alone, we increased our small business lending by nearly 40% to more than $10 billion and earned the No.1 ranking among SBA lenders nationwide. This $5 million commitment to VEDC will assist even more small businesses by providing the credit they need to grow and create jobs.” Dudley Benoit, senior vice president of community development banking at Chase, will present a $5 million check to Barragan at 3 p.m., January 28 at VEDC‟s headquarters at 5121 Van Nuys Blvd. in Van Nuys. State Senator Alex Padilla, will be among the dignitaries attending the presentation.

Chase is the consumer and commercial banking branch of JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM), a leading global financial services firm with assets of $2.1 trillion and operations in more than 60 countries.

Chase employs more than 6,000 people in Los Angeles and 18,500 across the state. It serves customers through 200 branches and 900 ATMs in Los Angeles County and 800 branches and 2,800 ATMs across the state. More information is available at www.chase.com.

VEDC is the largest non-profit small business lender in metro Los Angeles and offers direct micro and small business loans as well as SBA 7(a) and SBA 504 loans. VEDC has a $20 million loan portfolio and almost $40 million under management and originates loans totaling more than $35 million annually to local businesses. With six locations throughout the Los Angeles area, VEDC supports the small business owner for 35 years with the goal of creating and sustaining jobs and businesses in low to moderate income communities by providing high-quality economic development services.