Business News |Nov 13, 2020|3 min read

COLUMBUS, Ohio Huntington (Nasdaq: HBAN; today announced its
initial investment in Huntington Lift Local Business, a new $25 million, small-business lending
program focused on serving minority, women and veteran-owned businesses. Building on its
position as the nation’s No. 1 Small Business Administration (SBA) 7(a) lender by volume,
Huntington developed creative lending options and a variety of other features that will help bring
relief, recovery and growth to small businesses across the Midwest.
Under the new program, businesses can secure SBA-guaranteed loans for as little as $1,000
and up to $150,000. In addition to the SBA guarantee, the Huntington Lift Local Business
features include:
 Zero origination fees
 SBA fees paid by Huntington
 Lower credit score requirements
 Free financial education courses
 Checking accounts with 24-Hour Grace® overdraft fee relief, and service fee waived for
36 months
 Flexible, longer-term repayment options
“America’s smallest businesses have been particularly hard hit during the pandemic.
Huntington’s Welcome philosophy leads us to do more to serve the most challenged and
underserved businesses that contribute so much to our economy and the lives of business
owners and their employees,” said Steve Rhodes, Huntington’s business banking director. “We
know small businesses need help, and Huntington Lift Local Business delivers a new solution to
our customers when they need it most, whether for a startup or for an established business
looking to grow.”
According to a recent report from the National Bureau of Economic Research, the number of
active business owners fell by 22 percent from February to April 2020. In fact, black businesses
experienced a 41 percent drop, and Latinx business owners experienced a 32 percent drop.
In addition to providing much-needed capital, Huntington Lift Local Business will also give
customers access to business-planning and educational programs to support their businesses.
Through a partnership with Operation HOPE, Huntington will provide free educational
programming and financial literacy training to customers who participate in this program. This
programming and training are both critical links to ensuring customers are fully prepared as they
secure their loans and work to start or grow their businesses.
“Huntington is helping to solve for the challenge of lifting up underserved communities because
the moment calls for it, and this new commitment from Huntington is designed for those on their
way up,” said John Hope Bryant, chief executive officer of Operation HOPE. “With a ladder of
additional programming behind it — including our HOPE Financial Coaching and our online
entrepreneurship program — it will make a difference for people pursuing their dreams in
The HOPE in Hand app from Operation HOPE is a tool aspiring entrepreneurs and Huntington
Lift Local Business customers can use to find financial coaching support for all aspects of
money management. The app matches users with coaches near them and enables real-time
consulting and action planning.
“The economic uncertainty sparked by the pandemic has highlighted the need for increased
financial opportunity for all people who are starting or growing their small businesses,” said
Huntington’s SBA Program Director, Maggie Ference. “Our customers are seeking partners who
can help them achieve their dreams, and with Huntington Lift Local Business, Huntington can be
the advocate they’re looking for.”
Huntington Lift Local Business is a key component of Huntington’s recently announced fiveyear, $20 billion Community Plan, which is focused on driving economic inclusion through
access to capital, affordable housing and home ownership, and community lending and
In September, Huntington announced 24-Hour Grace® for Business and a no overdraft fee $50
Safety ZoneSM to further help customers manage their long-term financial health. These new
features help customers avoid paying overdraft fees.