NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (9/16/14)--Bayport CU was recently able to secure a $50,000 member business loan for members Sue and Michael Blei, helping the couple open a yoga studio after they had been turned away by local banks.
The Bleis' story and their experience with $1.3 billion-asset Bayport CU, Newport News, Va., was featured in the Sept. 14 edition of The Virginian-Pilot.
"It's the business loans like this that really makes this job enjoyable," Denise Owen, Bayport CU commercial banker, told News Now. "Fifty thousand dollars is not a huge business loan, but it really made a difference in their lives. It's always worth the effort."
The seeds of the Bleis' dream of opening a studio were planted in 2008 when Sue began practicing yoga to relieve back problems and sleep better. She enjoyed yoga so much she became an instructor and began teaching classes in the Chesapeake and Suffolk areas.
She wanted to open a studio to help people relieve their aches and pains, she told The Virginian-Pilot. But without any business experience, the Bleis' business loan applications were turned away by local banks.
But Owen took a personal interest in the Bleis' member business loan application. She noticed that Michael had been a member of the credit union for more than 30 years, and the couple had a strong personal credit history. Owen enlisted the couple in the U.S. Small Business Administration's Express Loan program, which guarantees 50% of loans to qualified borrowers.
With a minimum amount of paperwork, the Bleis were finally on the path to serenity.
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