2022 Outlook: Statement From SomerCor President & CEO, Manuel Flores

This November marks my third year as President and CEO of SomerCor. As I reflect on my tenure, I find myself energized and imbued with a strong sense of optimism inspired by SomerCor’s resilience and ability to overcome unprecedented challenges to ensure we remain a strong lending partner to our small business clients and a reliable resource to the many banks and credit unions who count on us for support with the SBA 504 loan program. Like many other businesses, SomerCor has been directly impacted by the pandemic.

We had to adapt to a rapidly evolving business environment and adverse economic conditions to meet the needs of our clients and partners, all the while dealing with and overcoming personal challenges and tragedy caused by the pandemic. I am proud of the SomerCor team for rising to the occasion – we worked diligently alongside other key stakeholders and lending partners to keep small businesses open, bringing hope to desperate entrepreneurs, workers, and communities. In FY 2021, we served 254 businesses, helped create/retain 4,216 jobs, authorized $103,942,000 in loans, distributed $9,915,443 in grants, and served 177 different communities. In addition to the positive impact we made to help keep our local economy strong, SomerCor obtained Accredited Lender Program status, a prestigious designation awarded by the Small Business Administration to high performing SBA nonprofit lenders.

As we pivot to rebuild our economy, I look forward to growing SomerCor’s SBA lending and grant administration services to enhance our impact. To our clients and lending partners, thank you for the opportunity to serve you. Providing you outstanding customer service and client support is a priority. Working together, we will continue to strengthen the small business ecosystem, create more jobs, and drive more investment in communities throughout Illinois.    

About SomerCor

SomerCor is a non-profit lender, certified by the Small Business Administration, that specializes in originating and servicing SBA 504 loans. Since its founding in 1992, SomerCor has funded over 2300 loans with a total volume of $1.44 billion. SomerCor also administers the Small Business Improvement Fund (SBIF) and Neighborhood Opportunity Fund (NOF) grants for the city of Chicago.