Down East Commercial Fisheries Fund

Photo by Don Dunbar

Photo by Don Dunbar. The Down East Commercial Fisheries Fund (DECFF) was created by the Sunrise County Economic Council (SCEC) to invest in Washington County-based commercial fisheries and marine-related industries. The program was designed to increase economic activity and capital-formation, leading-to-growth, profitability, and sustainability of Washington County’s fishing industry. As with all Sunrise Loan Fund programs, DECFF is provides gap financing to qualifying borrowers.

DECFF Loan Options

The loan fund offers two options.

The first option targets higher-risk clients seeking seed capital loans of up to $2,500 that would not typically be bankable through traditional lending institutions.  For these loans, DECFF acts as the primary lender and provides up to 80% of the request with the client providing the remaining 20% from other sources.  This option is designed for first-time borrowers and clients with a lack of a credit history or, in certain situations, problematic credit histories that prevent loans from commercial banks.  These loans enable access to resources and opportunities that may not otherwise be available.

The second option covers loans ranging from $2,500 to $10,000. It is designed to assist businesses that are beyond the start-up phase, but still need financial resources to grow, expand, hire and sustain their operations, or make changes to their current business plan. DECFF provides up to 50% of the loan request with the client providing the remaining 50% from other sources.

Eligible Uses & Requirements

Eligible uses of DECFF funds may include boat and gear acquisition/improvements; creation and/or expansion of value-added products/services; training and education; marketing assistance; energy/efficiency improvements; and assistance with the formation of start-up capital.

Loan fund requirements include, but are not limited to: coastal Washington County residency; ownership in a commercial fisheries and/or marine-related business; creation or retention of job(s); denial of traditional credit sources; funds must be used for gap financing or match situations.

Loans will not be made for debt consolidation, general operating expenses, or existing debt.

Loan terms and conditions will be decided by the Sunrise Loan Fund Committee, based on various factors such as risk, collateral, character, and creditworthiness.

For More Information

The Down East Commercial Fisheries Fund is a program of the Sunrise Loan Fund. As such, much of the information – application process, questions about interest rates, and forms, is on our SLF main page and our SLF FAQ section.