Press Release
February 4, 2011
3 minute read


TRENTON, N.J. (Feb. 4, 2011) –Enhancing Governor Christie’s commitment to economic development and job growth ,  the  New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA)- UCEDC partnership today announced closing over $1 million in loans in 2010. This represents one of UCEDC’s highest levels of annual lending since launching its first financing program in 1981. The strategic partnership between UCEDC, a statewide not-for-profit economic development corporation, and the EDA, has greatly expanded the array of training, technical and financial assistance services available to entrepreneurs and small businesses throughout New Jersey.

“Our Administration understands that small businesses play a vital role in New Jersey’s economy and we’ve made supporting these important job creators a top priority,” said Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno. “By partnering with banks and other economic development organizations, the State is able to leverage our resources and ensure entrepreneurs and small businesses have access to the training and capital they need to open, grow, and stay in New Jersey.”

In 2010, the EDA-UCEDC partnership supported 45 businesses across New Jersey with over $1 million in loans. This assistance, which is expected to leverage over $2.3 million in total investment in the state’s economy, is helping to spur the creation of nearly 200 new jobs and ensure the retention of more than 230 existing jobs.  Of the businesses assisted, ten are minority owned, 19 are women-owned and fourteen are start-up companies.  

“For over 30 years, UCEDC has helped entrepreneurs open their doors, assisted established businesses expand into new markets, and provided technical support to the local business community,” said UCEDC President Maureen Tinen.  “We are thrilled to have achieved this exciting milestone in 2010 and we look forward to continuing to work with the EDA to provide entrepreneurs with the resources they need to grow their business in New Jersey.”

Businesses that received assistance in 2010 include minority-owned Prep Boyz, LLC, an Elizabeth-based company that provides bed bug eradication preparation services for homeowners and businesses.  Owner Edward Roberts received personalized technical assistance to start his business, followed by a $10,000 microloan in February 2010 to improve cash flow, purchase equipment and supplies, and better promote his company.  He came back to UCEDC in December for a $15,000 microloan, which enabled him to get a performance bond and a contract with the City of East Orange. Roberts has already added two new employees to his original staff of eight. 

In Jersey City, Melissa Cullen was able to open Riverview Bark after enrolling in UCEDC’s Entrepreneurial Training Initiative and taking advantage of 18 months of support from a UCEDC business mentor.   The do it yourself dog wash and boutique also got a boost when it secured a $12,000 microloan from UCEDC to support equipment purchases. 

When Kathi Sica, co-owner of Ocean City Seafood, needed funds to purchase new equipment, a $27,000 UCEDC microloan helped her acquire soup warmers, a pizza oven, and an extra fryer – all critical to the restaurant’s ability to meet the demands of its growing customer base.  

Through its partnership with the EDA, UCEDC offers various training workshops that are available in English and Spanish, including a series of courses that help develop financial and business literacy for business owners at all stages of maturation; a comprehensive program that walks entrepreneurs through all aspects of starting a business, culminating in the development of a business plan; and, a year-long quality management systems training program that makes businesses more competitive globally.  All UCEDC clients receive one-on-one business counseling customized to meet the specific needs of their businesses.  Through its microloan program and business growth fund, UCEDC also offers a range of financing vehicles to address business needs at every stage of growth.  In addition, UCEDC’s award winning procurement department helps small businesses secure government contracts and subcontracts through specialized trainings, daily electronic bid-match, and one-on-one counseling throughout the bidding and proposal process.             

For more information on UCEDC, visit or call (908) 527-1166. To learn more about opportunities for business growth throughout New Jersey, visit or contact the Business Action Center at (866) 534-7789.