Financing Fundamentals

If you are planning on starting a new business or hoping to grow the business you currently own, there is a very good chance you’ll need some type of funding to get to next steps. There are many financing options available, but before you leap into the land of lending, take some time to research the following questions:

How Much Money Do I Need to Start?

No two businesses are exactly alike. Even in a franchise business, the money needed for startup funds can vary from location to location. Before you can begin to look at financing sources, it’s important that you understand what your financial needs will be. This might include ‘seed’ money, to help cover the costs of doing business in the first few months of operation, as well as funds to cover ongoing fixed expenses (rent, utilities, administrative costs, etc.) and variable expenses (inventory, shipping costs, sales commissions, etc.). Here are some tools to help identify your financial needs:

What Does My Financial World Look Like?

Just like no two businesses are alike, no two businesses will have identical financing needs. The money you might need as a startup business may be different from what a more established business will use. Are you a retail business? A manufacturing company? The type of industry sector your business is in might also affect the type of financing you can use. The more you understand about your industry and current financial needs, the easier it will be to identify the programs that make the best fit. The Small Business Administration offers a free video course on Financing Your Business.

What Will a Lender Need to Know?

Unless you’ve discovered you can totally fund your business by using your own money, chances are you’ll be approaching a lender or investor for financing. Here’s some key factors a traditional lender may look at when evaluating your loan. In addition to what a banker may look for, a private investor may have additional questions before considering financing.

What Financing Programs Are Available?

Now that you’ve taken some time to get a better picture of your financial needs, the next step is finding out what financing opportunities might work best for your business. There are many types of loans you may qualify for, or you may decide to borrow from people you know.

Below are links to some local resource organizations that provide financial resources for Baltimore area entrepreneurs:

Baltimore City Small Business Resource Center

Baltimore Small Business Resource Center is the City of Baltimore’s One-Stop-Shop for persons seeking to start and grow a business. We provide training, counseling and resources to strengthen the entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Lisa Edwards

Phone: (443) 451-7160

3000 Druid Park Drive
Suite 3000B
Baltimore, MD 21215

Baltimore Community Lending

Baltimore Community Lending makes loans to small real estate developers, startups, and small business owners who have no relationship with or are unable to get a loan from a bank.

Melissa Badeker

Phone: (410) 319-0732

875 hollins st.
Ste. 301
Baltimore, MD 21201

Baltimore Corps

Baltimore Corps and Kiva have partnered to offer the Greater Baltimore Region with access to 0% interest loans up to $10,000 through Kiva Baltimore. Kiva's community is passionate about helping entrepreneurs in our city--with over a million lenders, corporate sponsors, and our network, we will help you find the resources you need to grow your business.

Kaetlyn Bernal

Phone: (520) 784-3946

2401 Liberty Heights Ave
Suite 2730
Baltimore, MD 21215

Baltimore County Small Business Resource Center

The SBRC is a free service to help you establish, grow and improve your business through one-on-one sessions.

Kimberly Taylor


102 W. Pennsylvania Ave. #101
Towson, MD 21204

Baltimore Roundtable For Economic Democracy

We help worker co-ops in the greater Baltimore area get the capital they need to start and grow.

Christa Daring



City of Baltimore Development Corporation

The Baltimore Development Corporation (BDC) is a non-profit organization, which serves as the economic development agency for the City of Baltimore.

Susan Yum

Phone: (410) 837-9305

36 South Charles Street
Suite 2100
Baltimore, MD 21201

Community Wealth Builders

The MD Neighborhood Exchange is a new crowdfunding platform designed to connect great local businesses seeking capital with residents hoping to earn returns while strengthening our local economy.

Stephanie Geller


1600 W 41st Street
Suite 700
Baltimore, MD 21211

Cyprium Partners

Cyprium Partners (Cyprium) is a private investment firm that makes non-control investments in profitable middle-market companies, allowing company owners and their management teams to retain controlling interest in their business after we invest.

Leland Lewis

Phone: (646) 571-1620

461 Fifth Avenue, 26th Floor
New York, NY 10017

Downtown Partnership of Baltimore

Downtown Partnership of Baltimore is a community development organization focused on making Downtown a more vibrant place to work, live, and play.

Shelonda Stokes

Phone: (410) 605-0461

20 S. Charles Street
Baltimore, MD 21201

Enterprise Development Group

Micro Lender that supports and works hand in hand with small business owners in order that they may succeed and prosper. Business loans from $500 to $50,000 and credit builder loans of $500. Counseling for Start-ups and those in need of credit repair.

Fikru Abebe


3411 Bank Street
Baltimore, MD 21224

ETC (Emerging Technology Centers)

For nearly two decades, the ETC has provided a nurturing, innovative, and transformative experience for technology-focused entrepreneurs who are passionate about their businesses, motivated to succeed and committed to making a difference. Discover what the ETC can offer you — and what you can offer the ETC.

Amanda Gosling

Phone: (443) 451-7000 Ext: 501

101 N Haven St
Suite 301
Baltimore, MD 21224

Gabriel Venture Partners

Gabriel Venture Partners is an early-stage venture capital firm focused on investing in capital efficient companies while actively assisting entrepreneurs to build market leaders.

Scott Chou

Phone: (650) 551-5000

999 Baker Way
San Mateo, CA 94404

Greenspring Associates, Inc.

At Greenspring Associates, we solely focus on venture capital and have built a comprehensive platform dedicated to the asset class.

General Contact

Phone: (410) 363-2725

100 Painters Mill Road Suite 700
Owings Mills, MD 21117

Harbor Launch

Harbor Launch at the Institute of Marine and Environmental Technology (IMET) is a startup incubator and community for science and science support companies. Focus: Life Science / Biotechnology Startups. Wet labs, office space, coworking.

Betsy O'Neill Collie

Phone: (410) 746-0029

701 E. Pratt St.
Baltimore, MD 21202

Highland Capital Partners

There’s an art and science to scaling a company, and it’s a process made easier with partners who have successfully done it before. We're partners, but more than that, we're patrons to your vision.

General Contact


One Broadway, 16th Floor
Cambridge, MA 02142

HUB Baltimore

At HUB Baltimore we offer flexible and affordable workstations and office amenities to individuals and groups. Floor 2 of 217 N Charles St. provides fully furnished work stations, dedicated offices, large private offices, and conference rooms for rent at affordable monthly prices. Enjoy a natural sunlit work space with exposed brick and modern furnishings.

Phone: (410) 244-6400

217 N. Charles St.
Baltimore, MD 21201


iFundWomen is a crowdfunding ecosystem for women-led startups and small businesses. Our mission is simple: to drive cash funding into the hands of early stage female entrepreneurs so they can start and grow their businesses.

Karen Cahn


575 5th Ave.,
New York, NY 10001

Innovation Works

The mission of Innovation Works (IW) is to reduce Baltimore’s neighborhood and racial wealth divide by teaching and accompanying members of disinvested communities to build and own successful social enterprises that create sustainable neighborhood economies and result in better family living, more resilient communities, and a safer, more vibrant city.

Jay Nwachu


1400 Greenmount Avenue
Baltimore, MD 21202


InvestEd is a Baltimore-based Registered investment Advisory Firm (RIA) that believes everyone should have the opportunity to reach their financial goals. InvestEd provides free financial education, free financial planning and fee-only investment advising.

Allison Pescatore

Phone: (410) 469-9532

345 North Charles Street
Baltimore, MD 21201

Kinetic Ventures

Every day we look forward to partnering with entrepreneurs creating the next big thing.

Claudia Pagano

Phone: (301) 652-8066

Two Wisconsin Circle, Suite 660
Chevy Chase, MD 20815

Latino Economic Development Center

LEDC is a nonprofit organization that equips entrepreneurs and small business owners with capital and technical assistance / LEDC es una organización sin ánimo de lucro que apoya emprendedores y empresarios con asistencia técnica y microcrédito.

Molly Terry


10 East North Avenue
Baltimore, MD 21201

Launch Workplaces

Launch Towson is centrally located in the heart of Towson, MD. Just three blocks from Towson Town Center, Cheesecake Factory, Bahama Breeze, Stoney River, & Bonefish Grill. A weekly farmer’s market across the street keeps the area buzzing with activity and is only a short ways from Towson University. Launch offers 24 hour access, internet, mail services and more! Launch Towson has the services and amenities to help your small business grow!

Shawntaye Tisdale


210 West Pennsylvania Ave
Towson, MD 21204


Lendistry is a responsible minority-led lender that uses a fully-online application to help Maryland small business owners access loans, including SBA 7(a), in amounts ranging from $25,000 - $5 million.

Clarence Campbell

Phone: (888) 594-7270

2002 Clipper Park Road
Suite 105
Baltimore, MD 21211

Maryland Capital Enterprises, Inc.

Maryland Capital Enterprises Inc. provides small business loans, business counseling & education, and helps to develop business plans to assist entrepreneurs who start, expand, or purchase businesses.

Nick Rudolph

Phone: (410) 546-1900

333 North Charles Street
Baltimore, MD 21201

Maryland Department of Commerce

The Maryland Department of Commerce stimulates private investment, creates jobs, attracts new businesses, encourages expansion and retains existing companies. It also provides financial assistance to Maryland companies.

Stacey Harvey Reid

Phone: (410) 767-6287

401 East Pratt Street
Baltimore, MD 21202

Maryland Insurance Administration

Welcome to the Maryland Insurance Administration. The agency's goal is to provide efficient, effective service to both the consumers of insurance products and the insurance industry. Th?e Maryland Insurance Administration best serves its core constituents by assuring fair treatment of consumers. This consumer protection begins by regulating the availability of insurance coverage at fair prices and extends to issues of solvency and fair sales, claims and settlement practices.

Staff Contact


200 St. Paul St.
Suite 2700
Baltimore, MD 21202

Maryland Technology Development Corporation (TEDCO)

TEDCO was created to facilitate the transfer and commercialization of technology and to assist in the creation and growth of technology-based businesses in all regions of the State.

Troy LeMaile-Stovall

Phone: (410) 740-9442

7021 Columbia Gateway Drive
Suite 200
Columbia, MD 21046

Meridian Management Group

The Maryland Small Business Development Financing Authority (MSBDFA) was created by the Maryland General Assembly in 1978 to assist in the development of socially or economically disadvantaged entrepreneurs in the creation of Maryland businesses.

Randy Croxton

Phone: (410) 333-2548

823 E. Baltimore Street
Baltimore, MD 21202

New Enterprise Associates

NEA started nearly 40 years ago with a big idea: to create an enduring venture capital firm that would help exceptional entrepreneurs build transformational businesses.

General Contact

Phone: (410) 842-4000

1954 Greenspring Drive
Suite 600
Lutherville Timonium, MD 21093

Novak Biddle Venture Partners

Novak Biddle Venture Partners provides equity financing and assistance to early-stage, information technology companies principally located in the Mid-Atlantic region. Our mission is to help build successful, long-term, sustainable companies.

General Contact

Phone: (240) 497-1910

7501 Wisconsin Avenue
Suite 1380-E
Bethesda, MD 20814

Operation Hope Baltimore

Operation HOPE provides complimentary financial literacy education and empowerment programs and services to youth and adults in the Baltimore area HOPE Inside is a unique empowerment model that brings free financial dignity programming to underserved communities.

Robin Haynes

Phone: (443) 488-0126

4588 Edmondson Avenue
Baltimore, MD 21229

Sterling Partners

We seek to invest $35-$120 million in companies with greater than $5 million in EBITDA.

General Contact

Phone: (443) 703-1700

650 S. Exeter St
Suite 1000
Baltimore, MD 21202

TCP Venture Capital

Venture Capital firm focused on investing in high growth technology companies that will headquarter in Baltimore City.

Christopher College

Phone: (410) 497-7239

10019 Reisterstown Road
Owings Mills, MD 21117

TEDCO/Maryland Venture Fund

TEDCO and the Maryland Venture Fund makes $50,000 - $2,000,000 investments in seed and early-stage companies based in Maryland. We are dedicated to funding and growing the next generation of outstanding businesses in Maryland. We are an experienced team with significant operating and venture experience whose focus is on making the entrepreneurs successful. With more than $100M in assets under management, we partner with exceptional entrepreneurs and help them build valuable companies that last.

Tammi Thomas

Phone: (410) 740-9442

7021 Columbia Gateway Drive
Columbia, MD 21046

The Abell Foundation

The Foundation funds nonprofit organizations located and active in Maryland. Our focus is on Baltimore City, with more than 95 percent of our grants being awarded to organizations in the Baltimore metropolitan area.

Wanda Gresham

Phone: (410) 547-1300

111 S. Calvert Street
Suite 2300
Baltimore, MD 21202

Towson University Incubator

TU Incubator is Towson University’s business incubator for seed and early stage companies. Primary goals are to support regional entrepreneurs and induce mission-driven innovation in industries such as education (edtech) and healthcare.

David Cross

Phone: (410) 704-3079

7400 York Road, 3rd Floor
Towson, MD 21204

US Small Business Administration (SBA)

The SBA is a federal government agency. The SBA helps Americans start, build and grow businesses through capital, contracting, and counseling.

Rachel Howard

Phone: (410) 244-3337

100 S. Charles Street
Suite 1201
Baltimore, MD 21201


Venturize is an online resource that puts the power in your hands to feel good about your loan options, access responsible capital, and discover possibilities you didn’t know existed. It’s not a lender – but a program from Small Business Majority, a non-profit organization whose mission is to provide entrepreneurs with the education and resources they need to thrive.

Use our clear, trustworthy information and mobile-friendly tools – no strings attached. We’re here for one simple reason – to help you borrow confidently.

Debi Roder

Phone: (202) 828-8357

1101 14th Street, NW
Suite 950
Washington, DC 20005

Still have questions?
Of course, if you have questions on financing options and would like to visit with someone, call us at 410-984-3337.  We can answer your questions and connect you to the resources you need.