Lynn sees uptick in business loans


September 16, 2014
By Thor Jourgensen/The Daily Item

Carol Martinez might turn to the city in the future for a loan, partly for the financial help and partly because she wants her new Union Street business to be part of Lynn’s economic revival.

“I feel Lynn is slowly but surely transforming: It’s going to grow,” Martinez said.

She launched Community Multi Tax Services this week with a “soft opening” and started the business with a combination of savings and a personal loan. She offers translation services, tax preparation help, application preparation assistance for non-English speakers and other services. The time might come, Martinez said, when she might need more financial help to support her business.

“I think I would go through the city,” she said.

That is exactly what businesses large and small have done in increasing numbers during the last three years, according to Economic Development and Industrial Corporation reports.

EDIC loaned $803,000 to seven businesses and organizations in 2011, but business loans quadrupled during 2012 and 2013 with more than $1.5 million loaned. Loans secured by businesses and organizations ranged from $200,000 to Rossetti’s Restaurant, a new downtown business, to $25,000 to longtime Wyoma Square business Covert TV.

Borrowers own locations across the city, ranging from Rolly’s Tavern to Mahoney law offices and Roland L. Appleton, Inc., with several loans extended to downtown businesses like Rossetti’s and D’Amici’s Bakery, Beden Hardware and organizations like Arts After Hours and Building Bridges Through Music.

EDIC Director James Cowdell, in an email, stated the agency has loaned $2.4 million between 2011 and 2013 to help create 198 jobs and keep another 102 workers employed.

“In the past three years we have given out 37 loans. None of the loans that were given out in this time period have defaulted,” Cowdell stated.

Martinez said she comes from a family of entrepreneurs and said she decided to open her own business after spending her time helping translate documents, fill out applications and provide tax help to friends and family.

“Instead of doing it for free, I said to myself, ‘Why don’t I make a profit?’ I’m very self-sufficient and I am savvy,” she said.

She is also not the only Lynn resident starting a new business. Between January and July, 146 current business owners and residents started businesses or renewed their business status by filing business certificates in the city clerk’s office.

If this year’s filing trend stays on track, the number of renewed and new certificates could approach 250 compared to 203 filed in 2013 and 167 for all of 2012.

Vincent Waller is another resident opening a new business, Contract Dating, this year.

“It’s online dating — there’s always a demand. I’m one of those people who like to help people,” he said.

Waller said he is in the process of putting his website together and said he may consider borrowing money from the city in the future.

“I feel great about the community,” he said.

Thor Jourgensen can be reached at



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