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Wyoming, the Cowboy State, has one of the most favorable business environments in the nation. It is one of only five states in the country that does not have a corporate income tax and also doesn’t have an individual income tax. That makes it attractive for both small businesses and their employees. In this environment, local lenders are more than willing to finance startups and provide funds for existing small businesses to expand.
Lenders in Wyoming have experience in making loans to all types of small businesses, such as ag-tech and food products industry, wind energy, manufacturing, outdoor recreation, and data centers. Loans can be either short-term for temporary needs or long-term for acquisition of fixed assets.
The Small Business Administration (SBA), a federal agency, partially guarantees loans that lenders make to small businesses. These loans generally have lower rates because the SBA’s guarantees reduce the lender’s risk.
A revolving line of credit is a flexible form of financing that can be used to make up temporary shortfalls in cash flow. The loan advances can be repaid as cash flow comes in.
Term loans are repaid over a period of years with fixed payments and can be used to finance acquisitions, plant expansions or to refinance debt.
Equipment finance loans enable you to purchase expensive pieces of machinery and equipment and repay the loan over several years rather than having to lay out all the money up front.
If you are selling to your customers on extended payment terms, lenders can use your accounts receivable as collateral and make cash advances to you immediately upon issuance of the invoices. This process speeds up your cash flow, so you can pay your suppliers sooner and possibly take advantage of any prompt payment discounts they may offer.
Several groups service loans to small businesses that set up shop in the Cowboy State.
Wyoming Business Council promotes new business development in the state of Wyoming and provides consulting and advice on startups, expansion, and financing.
First Northern Bank of Wyoming is the oldest bank in Wyoming and offers term loans, lines of credit and SBA Loans to small businesses.
Wyoming Business Resource Locator is a site that locates advisors, local Chambers of Commerce, economic development organizations, and downtown associations by county that provide resources to assist small businesses.
UniWyo Credit Union offers business loans and lines of credit with branches in Cheyenne and Laramie.
Wyoming Women’s Business Center assists women-owned businesses with start-up advice, marketing plans, and staffing and provides resources for micro-loan financing.
Wyoming Bank & Trust offers commercial term loans and lines of credit with locations in Cheyenne and Burns.
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As a result of community and local government focus, Wyoming has many organizations and agencies that are set up with the specific purpose of attracting and supporting the growth of small businesses. For example, SCORE has several chapters located throughout the state to provide mentoring to entrepreneurs. In addition, the SBA has local advisors from its Small Business Development Centers located in several counties throughout the Cowboy State to provide mentoring and advice for small businesses owners. The state offers its own Economic Development Corporation to connect Wyoming businesses with state-sponsored resources and information.
Small businesses may qualify for grants intended specifically for the state of Wyoming. Wyoming Workforce Services has grants that provide training for employees to either learn a new skill or improve their operation in their current job. The Wyoming Business Council helps entrepreneurs access the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) programs that bring in federally-funded grants for small businesses.
To qualify for a small business loan in Wyoming, you’ll first need to decide on a structure for the business. It could be either a sole proprietorship, a corporation, or a limited liability company LLC. If you’re going to incorporate, you’ll need to register your business with the Wyoming Secretary of State. A sole proprietorship, on the other hand, only needs to register the name of the business with the county where they are located and make sure they are complying with any local regulations.
After the business has been properly set up and registered, you will need to prepare the documentation required by your lender. Typically, this will include a business plan, pro-forma cash flow projections, a statement for the purpose of the loan, the collateral being offered to secure the loan, and the method by which the loan will be paid back. Each lender will have their own specific requirements, so you will need to check with each one and do your homework before making the application.
Lenders will base the terms of their loan offer on your credit worthiness, how long the company has been in business, the size of the business, and the purpose of the loan. To determine which loan is best for your business, you’ll need to compare the terms and rates offered by local, national, and online financiers. Online platforms like Lendio help you do this in just a few minutes—and at no cost to you.
It’s difficult to start up and grow a business based solely on the owners’ and investors’ capital contributions. Borrowing money and taking out loans is part of the natural process of growing and managing a business. However, it’s important for the small business owner to carefully analyze the needs of the business and to match up the financing with the company’s growth plans and cash flow. Wyoming has plenty of resources for a small business owner to rely on to find the best solutions.
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