PLATINUM2024

Accompany Capital

Investing in New York Immigrant & Refugee Entrepreneurs

aka BUSINESS CENTER FOR NEW AMERICANS   |   New York, NY   |  https://accompanycapital.org

Mission

Accompany Capital creates a pathway to prosperity for New York area immigrant, refugee, and underserved entrepreneurs, supporting them as they launch and grow their businesses with access to affordable credit, financial education, and training in technology and best business practices.

Notes from the nonprofit

At Accompany Capital, we believe in the energy, productivity and impact contributed by entrepreneurs who have come to New York to launch new lives and new businesses. For more than 20 years, we have provided strategic financial and capacity-building services developed with a focus on the needs of immigrants and refugees. We understand the challenges involved in starting and running a business, establishing credit, and navigating through rules and regulations, while learning to adapt to a new country and culture. We work individually with each client, in their own language whenever possible, providing them with not only the capital they need, but also the caring support and guidance that have become synonymous with who we are.

Ruling year info

2009

Executive Director

Yanki Tshering

Main address

11 Broadway Suite 1515

New York, NY 10004 USA

Show more contact info

Formerly known as

New York Association for New Americans

Center for Community Development for New Americans DBA Business Center for New Americans (BCNA)

EIN

81-0584343

NTEE code info

Ethnic/Immigrant Services (P84)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Sign in or create an account to view Form(s) 990 for 2022, 2021 and 2020.
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Communication

Blog

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Accompany Capital works with underserved entrepreneurs–largely immigrant, refugee, and women-owned businesses–to provide them with the access to capital and technical support services they might not receive from mainstream lenders. With fewer collateral assets or savings to invest in equity, these entrepreneurs have difficulty meeting strict mainstream credit criteria, have less experience with U.S. regulations and financial systems and may face other language and cultural barriers that make them more susceptible to predatory lending practices. Accompany Capital’s leadership and board are committed to addressing these inequities: in FY23, 82% of all loans were directed to people of color and 87% percent of loans benefitted immigrant or refugee clientele. Beyond access to capital, Accompany Capital provides individualized counseling, business workshops and personalized services to help underserved entrepreneurs start, strengthen, or expand their businesses in New York City.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Microloan Program

Accompany Capital’s core microbusiness clientele—immigrants and refugees—face a lower likelihood of credit approval by mainstream lenders. By providing access to small amounts of working capital, Accompany Capital’s microloan program helps clients advance their lives and businesses in significant and lasting ways. We provide clients with financing to help them start or expand a microbusiness, or help refinance an existing loan, with microloans ranging from $1,000 to $50,000, and terms of up to three years. This loan is available to clients across New York City.

Population(s) Served
Immigrants and migrants
Economically disadvantaged people

A good credit score can save someone more than $200,000 over the course of their lifetime: we help clients establish or improve their credit rating with a credit enhancement loan of up to $2,000. Accompany Capital also offers free workshops on how to improve clients’ credit scores, understand their credit reports, and find and correct any errors the credit reports may contain. This loan is available to clients across New York City. The target population includes new arrivals such as refugees with no credit or other individuals who wish to improve their credit scores.

Population(s) Served
Immigrants and migrants
Economically disadvantaged people

Our staff understands that obtaining traditional bank financing can be daunting. Accompany Capital offers small business loans from $50,000+ to $350,000, providing a range of financing needs to clients within the five boroughs.

As a Community Advantage lender, we can help clients take their business to the next level with an SBA-guaranteed small business loan. These loans range from $75,000 to $350,000 and are available to any qualifying small business in NYC and surrounding areas. Eligible businesses can use an SBA Community Advantage loan for almost any business expense. Multiple business expenses can also be combined into one loan request. Here’s how business owners often use the SBA 7(a) loan program: working capital and expansion; equipment purchase; business acquisition; partner-buyout; refinancing high-cost debt; renovation and construction; owner-occupied commercial real estate; and start-up capital for qualified entrepreneurs.

Population(s) Served
Immigrants and migrants
Economically disadvantaged people

For over 20 years, Accompany Capital has administered a specialized savings program for refugees and individuals with approved asylum status who successfully save money and complete a financial literacy course. Individual Development Account (IDA) programs, funded by The Office of Refugee Resettlement, provide matched savings accounts designed to help refugees save and reach their goals.

We currently operate a rental assistance program for Afghan evacuees providing over 50 families with rental assistance as well as financial education and tenant workshops, helping them navigate a new financial system and the costly and competitive rental market in New York City.

Accompany Capital also received funding to operate a second IDA program from 2024 to 2027 to help refugees from around the world save for homeownership, professional recertification, education, or purchasing assets for their own small businesses. A $6,000 match is available for families and up to $3,000 for individuals.

Population(s) Served
Immigrants and migrants
Economically disadvantaged people

At Accompany Capital, we help clients become first-time home – or apartment – buyers through saving programs which provide financial incentives, advice on saving money for a down payment and closing costs, and seminars about the mortgage process and the benefits and responsibilities of home ownership. We help low to moderate-income New Yorkers learn how to participate in these government-sponsored savings programs:

The HomeFirst Down Payment Assistance Program, which provides a grant up to 6% of a home’s purchase price (or $100,000, whichever is greater) to be used towards down payment and closing costs.

The First Home Club Matched Savings Program, which provides incentives for home buyers to open and fund a first home savings account.

Accompany Capital’s home ownership seminars help clients understand the home purchasing process.

Population(s) Served
Immigrants and migrants
Economically disadvantaged people

Accompany Capital helps women owned businesses navigate some of the special challenges that entrepreneurial women face by offering targeted loans, tools, and training such as how to become MWBE certified and win bids and contracts. Accompany Capital also conducted and published the NYC Women Entrepreneurs Survey (2023) to better understand the needs of women entrepreneurs in New York’s five boroughs, in terms of both access to capital and technical assistance. Accompany Capital also offers avenues for networking with other New York businesswomen who have shared and understand the challenges of this journey through our partnership with New York Women in Business.

Population(s) Served
Economically disadvantaged people
Ethnic and racial groups

Accompany Capital’s multilingual team provides individualized technical assistance to clients throughout their entrepreneurial journey, from consultations on loan readiness to credit counseling and post loan consultation. Staff meet clients where they are to help them adapt to new technology such as banking apps, develop business websites, strengthen their online presence, and connect clients with relevant resource provides such as Pace University’s Small Business Development Center and Brooklyn Legal Services for issues regarding commercial lease negotiation and landlord disputes.

Population(s) Served
Immigrants and migrants
Economically disadvantaged people

Our workshops focus primarily on business management and are offered at beginner and advanced levels to serve a wide range of clients. Topics include understanding credit, digital marketing, business legal requirements, e-commerce, and financial management.

Beginner workshops provide a critical entry point for new or aspiring entrepreneurs such as street vendors or small catering businesses. Workshops are paired with individualized training to help clients create an email address, learn how to send and receive documents securely, and how to use online banking platforms.

Workshops for more experienced entrepreneurs include training in improving marketing materials, developing marketing plans, strengthening online presence through social media, and use of mobile technology and AI.

For convenience, workshops are held virtually or from our office location in Jackson Heights, Queens and translation services are available as needed.

Population(s) Served
Economically disadvantaged people
Immigrants and migrants

Where we work

Affiliations & memberships

New York Women in Business 2018

Opportunity Finance Network

New York State CDFI Coalition 2017

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of loans issued to clients

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Total dollar amount of loans issued

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

% of loans (#) disbursed to women-owned businesses

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

% of loans (#) disbursed to immigrant/refugee-owned businesses

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

% of loans (#) made to extremely low to moderate income clients

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Total Technical Assistance (TA) hours provided

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Total jobs supported

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

% of microloans (#) disbursed

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Accompany Capital is a leading New York CDFI with a very special mission. While we provide small business and micro loans to many qualifying New Yorkers, our particular focus has always been on a demographically important but underserved segment: hardworking and entrepreneurial immigrant and refugee entrepreneurs. Our original name – Business Center for New Americans – reflected that strong commitment. Our new name, Accompany Capital, reflects how we have evolved in the 20+ years since we were founded. We not only provide capital to help start and grow businesses; we also provide expertise, training, and evolving financial products to accompany our clients every step of the way on their entrepreneurial journeys.

In 2022 we invested time and resources to develop a three-year strategic plan which incorporated lessons learned during the pandemic. We invested in technology to improve the security of both our organization and our clients’ personal and financial information online; we increased the efficiency of our loan underwriting process; we added a CRM system that enables us to track the impact of our services more comprehensively; and we hired more support staff for loan officers.

Our plans for 2024 and beyond include:

Implementing an impact analysis program by 2025 to assess each loan applicant’s carbon footprint and to provide financing and/or grants to help them reduce their energy costs through more efficient, greener equipment and practices.

Providing Term Life and AD&D insurance policies of $10,000 to $25,000 to clients at no cost to protect wealth, and increase their financial health and peace of mind, becoming only the second CDFI in the U.S. to provide this benefit.

Collaborating with key partners to introduce our services to more businesses in the tech start-up sector.

Introducing a new four-year grant of $350,000 per year for an Individual Development Account Program that will provide eligible refugees with a match grant of $6,000 for families and $3,000 for individuals to save for microenterprise support, further education, recertification, or home ownership.

Continuing to partner with the NYC Taxi Workers Alliance by providing $2M to refinance loans to NYC Taxi Medallion holders which will reduce the average debt of each driver by $300,000.

Increasing the number of $75,000 to $150,000 loans originated to address a gap in the market for loans in this range, based on analysis conducted during our strategic planning process.

Investments in Accompany Capital will have significant impact and tangible results. When you support hard-working, underserved New York business owners and entrepreneurs, they not only build better futures for themselves and their families, but they also create new jobs and contribute to the financial health and well-being of their communities.

Beyond survival or subsistence, Accompany Capital designs programs that enable clients to prosper. With access to affordable credit, financial education, and training, Accompany Capital seeks to increase clients’ economic resilience by reducing business debt and increasing client savings.

Through access to financial education and credit counseling, underserved entrepreneurs build and improve their credit scores, the impact of which can save a low to moderate income household up to $200,000 in fees and interest in their financial lifetime, based on research by Credit Builders Alliance.

Ongoing TA is provided to all active loan clients, including guidance on business management, marketing, technology, business expansion, and environmental sustainability. Staff routinely visit clients to provide practical guidance on signage or marketing and provide resources for issues like landlord disputes.

Accompany Capital also operates the IDA Program for Refugees, combining training with 1:1 matched savings up to $3,000 for individual savers ($6,000 per family), sponsored by the Office of Refugee Resettlement. Proceeds are frequently used to start or grow a small business. Accompany Capital’s clients are resilient and resourceful, and when given support, they do save.

Accompany Capital has proven capacity to effectively serve vulnerable communities in New York City. Named one of the top 10 U.S. microlender by CNN Money1 and top SBA microlender in NYC eight years running. Accompany Capital also received an A+ for Financial Strength and Performance from AERIS, the leading expert in the financial and impact performance of CDFIs.

Accompany Capital has earned its reputation as an authority in microlending and small business development, with ongoing collaboration with the City of New York, federal agencies, and a wide range of lenders and business development organizations. Accompany Capital is noted as a premier organization supporting refugees in developing assets, representing the U.S. model at the 2016 International Microcredit Summit in Dubai, the United Nations 2018 World Investment Forum in Geneva, and Refugee Entrepreneurship Summits organized by the Center for Entrepreneurship in London (2019) and Izmir, Turkey (2023).

As an immigrant and women-run organization, the team has the unique ability to build trust with vulnerable clients based on shared backgrounds and lived experiences. The staff speak 15 languages and dialects enabling them to communicate effectively and empathetically given that much of the staff are refugees and immigrants themselves. Many loan officers arrived in the U.S. with an urgent need to learn about the American financial system to thrive in a new country. Their personal experiences pursuing credit, starting businesses, and purchasing homes provide them with first-hand knowledge of the barriers that clients face.

Accompany Capital has served refugees, immigrants, and women entrepreneurs for 25+ years. Since its founding in 1997, Accompany Capital has directly financed 4,910 micro and small business loans totaling $60,566,698 supporting the start-up, expansion, and development of thousands of small businesses.

Since its 1997 inception, Accompany Capital has delivered hundreds of workshops and provided tens of thousands of hours of technical assistance (TA) to nearly 10,000 aspiring New York City entrepreneurs and active small businesses. In FY23, AC provided TA to 629 clients through 5,527 hours of training and counseling. As a result, 21 new businesses were started, 460 businesses were strengthened/expanded with the creation of 189 new full-time jobs, 80 part time-jobs, and the retention of 742 full-time jobs.

During COVID-19, AC provided $13 million in active relief to clients and communities accessing financial and technical assistance resources to jump-start individual businesses and economic recovery.

In 2023, the organization was selected to be one of 8 CDFIs partnering with SBS to make loans capitalized by the Small Business Opportunity Fund, the largest public-private loan fund directed at small businesses in New York City history. Accompany Capital funded 67 businesses via the Small Business Opportunity Fund through nearly $7M+ in loans at a fixed interest rate of 4 percent, regardless of loan size.

In 2023, Accompany Capital also became the first CDFI to participate in NYC’s Taxi Medallion Relief Program to reduce medallion owners’ outstanding debt from a crushing $400,000-$600,000 to a more manageable $95,000. To date, Accompany Capital has refinanced 19 taxi medallion loans totaling $2.1M.

Accompany Capital’s leadership has ambitious plans to enhance the scope of technical assistance available to underserved entrepreneurs to include environmental sustainability, support for minority founders in the tech sector, and financial resilience.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We take steps to get feedback from marginalized or under-represented people, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on demographics (e.g., race, age, gender, etc.), We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

Financials

Accompany Capital
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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Accompany Capital

Board of directors
as of 06/10/2024
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Kwame Marfo

Africa Empowerment Fund

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 5/21/2024

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Asian/Asian American
Gender identity
Female
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

Equity strategies

Last updated: 05/16/2024

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Policies and processes
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.