Small businesses are the bedrock of Sint Maarten’s economy. They are a major source of job creation and help encourage innovation; they also provide many of the products and services in our daily lives and contribute to the social cohesion of our island communities.

However, access to finance is a longstanding challenge to small businesses creation and growth, particularly those run by women and young entrepreneurs. Moreover, this sector has been hit the hardest by the devastation of Hurricanes Irma and Maria and the COVID-19 pandemic.

Given the importance of small businesses, the NRPB, as an implementing agency of the Trust Fund, launched the Enterprise Support  Project (ESP). This project aims to support their recovery through direct financial assistance in order to contribute to the restoration of economic activity in Sint Maarten. This involves cooperation with financial institutions, such as commercial banks and social lenders, that offer loans and grants to assist small businesses and enhance their services.

How do we support small businesses?

We offer three packages:

The Working Capital (WC) package is for operational expenses e.g. inventory, rent, or GEBE bills. This is a 100% loan up to US$40,000 for new businesses and US$60,000 for existing businesses.

The Asset and Repair (AR) package consists of a 65% grant and a 35% loan.
For new businesses, it is up to US$85,000. **
For existing businesses, it is even up to US$150,000

  • Assets (A) must be productive assets with the ability to generate profits
  • Non-structural Repairs (R) refers to minor repairs such as painting, plastering, tiling, and basic roof repair. It excludes load-bearing components
  • All AR packages must contain a loan for at least 35%
  • For AR packages above US$60,000, businesses must invest 10% of the application themselves.

** Exemptions are possible on a case by case basis. Larger amounts may be pre-approved by the NRPB as second instalments upon proven repayment capacity.

The Refinancing package is up to US$20,000 to free up collateral. The loan must have originated before the launch of the Enterprise Support Project and must be performing.

Eligible enterprises can combine the three packages. However, the total application cannot exceed $150,000

Application process
1Review the eligibility criteria

The Eligibility Criteria:
• For-profit enterprises with a maximum average monthly revenue of Naf. 100,000 (≈ US$55,866)
• Registered with the Tax administration and up to date at the Chamber of Commerce and Industry
• Compliant with Sint Maarten’s environmental policy and the World Bank’s social and environmental requirements
• Operated within an eligible sector

Ineligible sectors include, e.g. land purchase, weapons, and gambling. The ESP also does not finance bulldozers, excavators, front loaders and luxury items.

The full list of excluded activities is part of the supplemental application form as published here. 

2Fill out the supplemental application form
4Send all required documents to enterprisesupport@nrpbsxm.org for prescreening

During the prescreening process, the ESP Team may reach out with questions. Once the prescreening is complete, you will be notified of your status. Please contact the Enterprise Support Project team via enterprisesupport@nrpbsxm.org

5Your application will be pre-screened

Once your application has been pre-screened, your preferred financial institution will start the credit assessment — please be available and in contact with the financial institution in case they require additional information.

6The NRPB will finalise the approval process

For applications >$100,000, the NRPB together with the World Bank will finalize the approval. Smaller applications will be handled and finalized by the NRPB.

Once your application has been approved, you will receive a Beneficiary Agreement from the NRPB and a Credit Agreement from your preferred financial institution. If you have any questions, please contact the Enterprise Support Project team via enterprisesupport@nrpbsxm.org

Watch the video to learn more!

Whatever business phase you are in, from startup to mature, our partners can assist you in providing financing for your investment needs. From beauty salons to construction companies, you can get in touch with the bank of your choice.

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