By David Gerogosian, PEF Services LLC

With long term interest rates at record lows, the availability of low cost borrowings from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) for fund managers licensed through the SBIC program has drawn interest from fund manager that might not have otherwise considered this avenue a couple of years ago.  With many new well-known managers licensed in the past two years, it begs the questions “How does this process work?  What are the criteria?  Is it worth the time and effort? What exactly is the process?”

To assist potential first time funds, SBA has recently addressed many of these questions through their optional “pre-screening process” for groups interested in exploring the possibility of pursuing an SBIC license.  We believe that this is a valuable exercise for many who are just beginning their diligence on the SBIC process.   Below is the introductory statement from SBA’s website on the pre-screening process along with a link to the website.

If you have any questions related to this and other SBIC related topics, please contact

Prospective applicants to the SBIC Program have the opportunity to participate in a “pre-screening” process designed to help them assess their fit with the program. After submitting an “Executive Summary” that outlines their SBIC fund proposal, fund managers obtain direct feedback from the SBA Investment Officers responsible for evaluating new applications. The feedback is non-binding and every new applicant to the SBIC program is entitled to a full review of their qualifications, but pre-screening discussions often yield time-saving feedback.

To find out more about this process along with detail on the overall pre-screening process, track record information requirement and general FAQs on the current licensing process please follow this link to the SBA website