Small businesses are already being negatively impacted by the spread of the COVID-19 Coronavirus in the United States, including many members of the Kiva community. Whether it’s your favorite neighborhood coffee shop, your best friend who owns a storefront or a local grower you support at the farmer's market, millions of American businesses will be disrupted when employees and customers must stay home and supply chains break down.
Many of those businesses and entrepreneurs are currently looking for financial relief to survive the next trying months—and we believe the Kiva community can help.
Kiva lenders have shown their commitment to providing financial assistance to all by making 0% interest loans to entrepreneurs in the U.S. on Kiva.org for the last 10 years. In today's difficult circumstances, we'd like to make it as easy and impactful as possible for small businesses in the U.S. to have access to affordable capital on the Kiva platform—capital that may be the difference between shutting down and keeping their doors open.
We recognize that the COVID-19 pandemic has global impact, and we'll continue to explore ways to help as many people affected by this crisis as possible. Currently, the U.S. market is the place we have the most agility to deploy financial assistance.
Effective immediately, U.S. applicants for a Kiva loan will have access to the following:
- Expanded eligibility: More businesses in the US will be eligible for a Kiva loan.
- Larger loans: The maximum loan on the Kiva platform will increase from $10,000 to $15,000.
- Grace period: New borrowers may access a grace period of up to 6 months for greater financial flexibility.
If you’re a small business owner who believes you can benefit from a Kiva loan, or you know one in your community, reach out. Join us at kiva.org/borrow and apply for a loan. The Kiva community is behind you.
Notwithstanding expanded borrower eligibility, not all applicants will qualify to fundraise. Given the economic challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, new US loans may have a risk of delinquency or default higher than Kiva's historical rate.