February 6, 2023


The Number One Source For Business

1 Percent of P.P.P. Borrowers Got Over One-Quarter of the Loan Money

The largest loan in the building went to Atane Engineers, a contractor that changed its name in 2018 after a corruption scandal that culminated when two former top executives pleaded guilty to paying bribes for city infrastructure contracts. The company, which pays $2.5 million a year for its rent at 40 Wall, received a $7.6 million loan, which it said supported 235 workers. The firm did not respond to messages seeking comment.

The data also reveals how inconsistently the Small Business Administration disbursed money through the Economic Injury Disaster Loan, a still-running aid effort that offers companies and nonprofits low-interest loans directly from the government. That program is supposed to make loans of up to $2 million, but the S.B.A., concerned that it would run out of money, imposed various caps, none of which were publicly disclosed to borrowers at the time.

Two organizations received loans in early April for more than $500,000, the cap the agency set on the program later that month. The Jewish Community Center in Stamford, Conn., received $900,000 and the CWC Group, a chiropractic clinic in Bellevue, Wash., received $713,900, according to government data.

The low-interest loan, which has to be repaid, was a lifeline for CWC, said Dr. Sean Kim, the owner of the practice, which does business under the name Blue Spring Chiropractic. Its sales have declined by as much as 70 percent in some months since the pandemic began, he said, and the loan helped him retain 16 employees and contractors.

“This is about survival,” Dr. Kim said. “Without it, we would not be sleeping well.” (The Jewish Community Center did not respond to questions about its loan.)

More than 8,000 organizations got loans for $500,000, a limit that was later lowered to $150,000, where it has remained since May. The disaster loan program has distributed 3.6 million loans, totaling $194 billion, since the coronavirus crisis began — far more than the program had given out in its entire 67-year history.

A Small Business Administration spokesman said the agency’s “historically successful Covid relief loan programs have helped millions of small businesses and tens of millions of American workers when they needed it most.”