Frost Bank Executives Provide Advice to San Antonio Area Small Businesses Navigating the PPP Lending Process

Some San Antonio groups wanting to provide assistance to very small local businesses seeking federal stimulus money have turned to the bankers at Frost Bank for tips.

They target companies with less than 50 employees.

In a conference call Thursday, Frost Bank CEO Phil Green and other bank officials shared the ins and outs of the Paycheck Protection Program – a stimulus program run by the Small Business Administration which distributes millions to small businesses to use for payroll and other expenses like rent and utilities.

“We applied the things we learned from the very arduous process of applying for these P3 loans through the SBA and kind of put together a presentation,” said Frost spokesperson Bill Day.

Frost Bank was among the banks that processed the most loans in San Antonio in the first round of PPP funding, which provided $ 349 billion to businesses last month. The second round, with $ 310 billion, is underway.

The conference call was hosted by CEO and President of the San Antonio Economic Development Foundation, Jenna Saucedo-Herrera. She is part of an economic transition team formed last month by Mayor Ron Nirenberg and Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff to determine how businesses and activities interrupted by the pandemic can safely resume.

However, Governor Greg Abbott last week chose to allow many businesses to reopen – before the group could release its own report.

Also in attendance included LiftFund CEO and President Janie Barrera, representatives from the nonprofit groups San Antonio for Growth on the Eastside (SAGE) and Westside Development Corp., and officials from the UTSA Small Business Development Center.

Frost Bankers shared their experience with the PPP process.

“What slowed down PPP requests the most early in the process was that the request was not filled out correctly,” Day said.

But the SBA also wanted information that was not in the loan application, such as a North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) code, which classifies a business by its industry, Day said.

The SBA also required nine-digit zip codes on applications. Those that contained a five-digit zip code would not pass.

“We have learned these lessons,” Day said. “Not everyone knows this, especially a real small business that has never done this before.” Frost has put the information together in a checklist for businesses so they know what it takes for an application to be properly submitted to the SBA.

Funding for the second round of the PPP is taking longer than expected, so very small businesses “might have a chance” of getting the money, he said.

Frost plans to donate the fee he collects for processing loan applications from small businesses helped through this process to the San Antonio Food Bank.

Frost has received approvals for 16,391 PPP loans totaling just over $ 3.4 billion. In Bexar County, it obtained the approval of 3,461 loans totaling $ 630 million.

Patrick Danner is a San Antonio-based writer who covers banking and civil courts. To learn more about Patrick, become a subscriber. [email protected] | Twitter: @AlamoPD


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