Headline after headline decries the challenge of small business owners seeking loans.

Only 56 percent of small businesses that tried to obtain a loan got all or most of what they needed, according to a recent edition of the Office Depot Small Business Index. However, America's small business community still remains intent on obtaining the finances needed to grow their business: 30 percent of small business owners say they are researching more ways to expand their business.

Office Depot is coming to the rescue in a new partnership with the nation’s leading Small Business Administration lender. Office Depot inked a deal with Superior Financial Group to offer qualified small business customers access to capital. Small businesses can apply for SBA loans between $5,000 and $25,000.

"Small businesses are the engine of our economy. We believe this 'express' loan program will be just what these business owners need to help jump-start the economic recovery for America," says Monica Luechtefeld, executive vice president of Global E-Commerce for Office Depot. "We hope the small business community will take advantage of this opportunity to obtain a loan and get access to the funds they need to start, run, and grow their business."

This is the first time Office Depot has offered an official small business loan program. The goal is to help small businesses stretch their budgets so they can make the investments they need to grow their business and hire new employees. Here’s how it works:

Customers can apply for a loan by visiting www.officedepot.com/sba.

  1. A one-page online application can pre-qualify you in seconds.

  2. There is no application fee for this loan.

  3. Customers who are approved for a small business loan will receive 10 percent discount off their loan origination fee.

  4. The terms of the loan repayment will be over a period of eight years to help keep monthly payments low.

  5. There is no penalty for early repayment.


So, if you need a small business loan and haven’t had luck with other options, this might be worth a shot. Of course, Office Depot is hoping you’ll spend some of that money on the supplies they sell, but no purchase is necessary.