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Charleston Local Development Corporation (LDC)



 The LDC is a not-for-profit organization, focused on fostering economic development of the greater Charleston region by providing loans to small businesses in Berkeley, Charleston, Colleton, and Dorchester Counties. Through its many partnerships with funding resources, the LDC is able to provide a variety of loan programs that can assist with most needs small businesses could have.

The LDC does not compete with the traditional commercial lending sector; it works with banks and other financial institutions. A business can only qualify for a LDC loan if conventional financing is not available. However, the LDC does have minimum credit criteria and enjoys a very low default rate with its borrowers.

Small businesses in the greater Charleston region have used the LDC’s loan programs for start-up, expansion or business continuation financing. Also with the LDC, minority-owned, women-owned and other disadvantaged businesses are able to access funds they would not normally have available.   LDC loans are used for virtually any business purpose, including inventory and equipment purchases, leasehold improvements, working capital, the improvement of real estate and, in some cases, the purchase of real estate.

Loan Programs


The Microloan program lends up to $50,000 for up to 6 years to be used for almost any business start-up or expansion purpose within Berkeley, Charleston, and Dorchester counties except to refinance existing debt, acquire real estate or improve applicant-owned real estate. A business applying for a Microloan must be unable to obtain the financing elsewhere.


Provides loans up to $75,000 for up to 10 years to disadvantaged businesses for start-up or expansion within Berkeley, Colleton, Charleston, and Dorchester counties. Loan proceeds may be used for almost any business-related purpose, including the improvement of real estate.


Provides loans for up to 10 years to businesses within the City of Charleston for fixed assets and working capital. The project must create and/or save an average of one job for each $20,000 loaned. The project must also leverage private investment of at least $2.00 for every $1.00 of LDC RLF investment.


Provides a small percentage of financing for a project or business to fill the financing “gap” which exists after an equity injection and commercial financing have been committed. Projects are considered on a case-by-case basis.


Provides loans for up to 10 years to businesses for fixed assets working capital, inventory, supplies, fixtures, furniture, machinery and equipment. The project must be located in the rural areas of Berkeley, Charleston, Colleton and Dorchester Counties. Eligible areas are defined as those outside of cities with a population of 50,000 or more and their adjacent boundaries.


In the event of a natural disaster, this fund provides loans up to $5,000 at no interest, with an additional $5,000 available at 4% interest, for businesses in Berkeley, Charleston and Dorchester Counties which have suffered a loss.  Businesses must be eligible to receive insurance moneys or funding from the SBA or other traditional sources or appear to be eligible for permanent financing through one of the LDC programs.  The funds are designed to assist businesses to secure damaged buildings, purchase generators, replace perishable inventory, paying salaries, etc. A maximum term of 180 days or due upon receipt of proceeds from insurance, SBA Disaster Assistance funds or other sources of funding, whichever occurs first.

 The LDC is an Equal Opportunity Lender. 


Mailing Address:

75 Calhoun Street, Third Floor
Charleston, SC 29401


843-724-3796 (phone)

843-724-7354 (fax)

Email Contact :


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