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BUSINESS SUPPORT AND TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE
Creative Collective is a business program that provides opportunities for small businesses, entrepreneurs, non-profits, organizations and individuals that are looking for a more modern and creative approach to business growth and brand awareness. Our partners benefit from our ability to layer services that reach far beyond traditional marketing and business programs. Together we share a vision that thriving arts, culture and creative sectors makes the world a better place and support the sustainability of our communities and businesses.
As the official destination marketing organization for the City of Salem, Destination Salem cooperatively markets Salem as one of Massachusetts’ best destinations for families, couples, domestic and international travelers who are seeking an authentic New England experience, cultural enrichment, American history, fine dining, unique shopping and fun.
The Enterprise Center
Established in the heart of educational growth, the Enterprise Center at Salem State University welcomes entrepreneurs, business owners and professionals of all ages and experience levels to come in and learn something new. As an advocate and voice for the North Shore small business community, the Enterprise Center is a leader in helping business start and grow in this region.
MassHire North Shore Career Center
MassHire-North Shore Career Center creates and sustains powerful connections between businesses and job seekers through a regional network of employment professionals. MassHire-North Shore Career Center promises to champion prosperity, connecting employers with talent and job seekers with tools, services, and connections to achieve meaningful and sustained employment.
North Shore Alliance for Economic Development
The North Shore Alliance for Economic Development is the economic development engine for a dynamic and evolving regional economy, working to help start-ups and existing businesses alike find the resources they need to thrive right here on the North Shore.
Salem Chamber of Commerce
The mission of the Salem Chamber of Commerce is to make Salem a better place to live, work, and do business. The Salem Chamber serves as the voice for member businesses, representing, advocating and working to enhance the business and civic environment. With 525 members, we are the largest business organization in Salem.
The Salem Partnership, created in 1987, is a unique public-private partnership that has helped Salem to grow and prosper, and will work to make sure the growth and prosperity continues. The Salem Partnership is a non-profit membership organization. The Salem Partnership is directly involved in determining the outcome of issues critical to the greater Salem community. The members of the Partnership believe that a strong community creates a prosperous business climate.
Small Business Administration
Created in 1953, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) continues to help small business owners and entrepreneurs pursue the American dream. The SBA is the only cabinet-level federal agency fully dedicated to small business and provides counseling, capital, and contracting expertise as the nation’s only go-to resource and voice for small businesses.
Small Business Development Center
The Massachusetts Small Business Development Center Network’s Northeast Regional Office provides free and confidential business assistance to prospective and existing small businesses located in the North Shore and Merrimack Valley areas of the state. We also serve areas of the Greater Boston area. Since the beginning of its affiliation with Salem State University in 1992, the Northeast Regional Office has worked with over 15,000 entrepreneurs.
Salem for All Ages
In December 2016, the City of Salem received approval for its age-friendly action plan, Salem for All Ages, from AARP and the World Health Organization. The action steps in this plan lead to an overall goal of strengthening the City’s commitment to being a community where everyone is able to comfortably and safely age in place and remain active. A certified age-friendly business is one in which people of all ages and abilities can comfortably shop, dine, or receive services. These businesses intentionally act to make their spaces and their operations more inclusive for customers and patrons of all ages and abilities, thereby expanding a business’ customer base.
This program works to expand financing opportunities for local entrepreneurs, while creating jobs and revitalizing the city’s downtown and eligible neighborhoods. The program provides low-interest loans to qualified entrepreneurs to cover the gap between the amount of financing needed for an economic development project and the amount that conventional lenders can finance. Funds are available for acquisition, construction, or rehabilitation of real property and for financing related to the purchase of equipment, fixtures, inventory, leasehold improvements and working capital. Terms and conditions vary.
This program is designed to encourage private investment and reinvestment by new and existing property/business owners in eligible districts. The program allows a one-to-one match for moderate to substantial exterior and/or façade improvements in the designated areas. The match from the city is up to $5,000 for each project.
We believe that communities should control their local economic development and share in the wealth it creates. Businesses agree to share a percentage of their revenue each quarter in exchange for investment. Revenue is shared until investors receive their investment multiple. If investors haven’t received this amount by the maturity date, the remaining amount is owed to them as a balloon payment.
For more than 40 years, MGCC and its predecessors have helped thousands of businesses in the Commonwealth. Its mission is empowering small business through financing and managerial assistance to create economic opportunities for all. MGCC provides and supports inclusive business resources to organizations across the Commonwealth and ensures equal access to resources and financing for all Massachusetts small businesses and their owners.
The Massachusetts Office of Business Development (MOBD) helps businesses relocating to Massachusetts and businesses wishing to expand their current operations here. Our staff operates in regions across the state, so we are able to provide you with on-the-ground knowledge and viable connections for your business. We work closely with the private and public sectors to coordinate a whole range of resources at your disposal.
As the Commonwealth’s economic development and finance authority, MassDevelopment is committed to achieving three goals: stimulating business, driving economic growth, and helping communities thrive across Massachusetts. MassDevelopment partners with banks to provide a wealth of financing solutions. We also provide extensive real estate expertise and offer highly targeted programs aimed at specific audiences.
The Federal government established the Opportunity Zone (OZ) incentive in 2017 to provide tax incentives for investment in low income communities. The City of Salem has two Opportunity Zones (‘OZ’) encompassing large areas of land that are home to vacant parcels ripe for development, underutilized properties that can benefit from reinvestment, and businesses who wish to expand and grow but lack the capital necessary to do so. These characteristics are especially apparent in the OZ properties in two specific areas of the City: the area proposed for a new South Salem Commuter Rail (‘SSCR’) stop and those along Highland Avenue and Swampscott Road.
To learn more about OZ’s, go to the IRS’ Frequently Asked Questions page at:
To view OZ opportunities in Salem, please visit Smart Growth America’s Opportunity Zone Marketplace at:
The Salem Loan Fund offers loans to Salem’s existing and start-up businesses that cannot currently access financing from a traditional bank or credit union lender. Loans will range from between $5,000 to $100,000 with a one percent closing fee, feature a fixed interest rate, and have a term of up to five years. In addition to the loan opportunity, the program offers technical assistance to businesses seeking funding. Qualified community partners can assist business owners with the loan application, and, if a business is not ready to take on a loan, they can help with financial planning and forecasting. The technical assistance providers are able to connect businesses to networks that can offer guidance and help the business advance to a point where accessing funding in the Salem Loan Fund makes sense.