Backed by Mayor Ras Baraka of Newark, the Newark Community Economic Development Corporation has been operating in the city with the expressed intent of helping local businesses receive the funding necessary to begin operations and attract new, diverse talent to the city to promote its growth. Helping to lead the NCEDC is Kevin Seawright, Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President, who recently spoke to LocalTalkNews about his plans.
Focused primarily small businesses, regardless of the markets they serve, the NCEDC extends loans that will benefit both uptown and downtown to better reach the entire Newark community. From another interview it’s clear Seawright’s involvement with the company and its community efforts go back to September of 2014, enacting and participating in an open door policy that invites loan seekers to meet with specialists at their leisure. This isn’t just to facilitate the transfer of funds to get a business off the ground, but to make sure borrowers have a grounded understanding of financials, taxes and credits that come along with the loans they would apply for. This bit of financial counseling makes it so borrowers have a better understanding of how opening a new business would actually work in the real world. It’s after a long process of counseling that borrowers are cleared, and a degree of confidence is placed in the prospective business presented, that loans are extended, helping small businesses grow to their full potential.
Kevin Seawright says on Twitter that business is the NCEDC’s primary focus, regardless of the affiliation of the borrower, and this is facilitated by developing and fostering relationships with partners of different backgrounds, even banks operating in the city. And while the residency of the borrower isn’t in question, the operating parameters of the business in question must take place within, and for the betterment of, the city of Newark.
Under Seawright’s time with the corporation, efforts have been made to ensure that service to borrowers is the primary concern when deciding on the eligibility of a loan. At present, there are at least two staff members working on every potential loan to determine the business’ intent for the community of Newark, as it is a top priority. The NCEDC even runs courses based on business development that awards graduates with a small grant that can be put towards developing their business idea.
Seawright has made open invitations to any business looking to open their doors in Newark, and praises his staff at helping to make those invitations valuable to all the new retailers populating Market Street. He’s also present on social media, in addition to the aforementioned Twitter, Kevin can be found through SoundCloud as well, where he frequently publishes new mixes and contributes to podcasts.