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Popular approves close to $500M in SBA-backed loans

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Popular announced that the Small Business Administration approved a total of $494 million in loans to its clients under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).

Of these, $398 million was granted through Banco Popular de Puerto Rico and $96 million through Popular Bank, Popular’s banking subsidiary on the U.S. mainland.

The Paycheck Protection Program was well received in Puerto Rico and in the continental United States. On Thursday, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin and U.S. Small Business Administration Administrator Jovita Carranza issued a joint statement saying the “SBA has processed more than 14 years’ worth of loans in less than 14 days.”

“The Paycheck Protection Program is saving millions of jobs and helping America’s small businesses make it through this challenging time. The Economic Injury Disaster Loan Programis also providing much-needed relief to people and businesses,” they said.

Furthermore the SBA announced that, due to high demand, loans approved nationwide have already reached the limit of available funds in the first round of financing. 

“The program has undoubtedly been very beneficial for small and medium businesses in these challenging times,” said Popular’s CEO Ignacio Álvarez. “We know that, due to limited funds, many businesses in Puerto Rico and other parts of the United States did not have the opportunity to participate. We will closely follow developments in the U.S. Congress regarding another possible allocation of funds.”

“We will be ready to continue supporting our clients, working with them to submit completed applications or obtain missing documentation if additional funds are approved,” said Álvarez. 

In coming days, Popular confirmed it will focus its efforts on disbursing the funds already approved, as well as on communicating with all clients who submitted applications. 

“The high demand we have seen underscores the need for hardworking Americans to have access to relief as soon as possible. We want every eligible small business to participate and get the resources they need,” Carranza and Mnuchin stated.

Author Details
Author Details
Business reporter with 27 years of experience writing for weekly and daily newspapers, as well as trade publications in Puerto Rico. My list of former employers includes Caribbean Business, The San Juan Star, and the Puerto Rico Daily Sun, among others. My areas of expertise include telecommunications, technology, retail, agriculture, tourism, banking and most other areas of the economy.
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