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First Bank Invests Half Million in Small Business Fund

May 04, 2018 - 8:11 am
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ST. LOUIS (KMOX) - Providing some money for small business in low to moderate income neighborhoods -that’s the aim of the Justine Petersen Emerging Markets loan fund. Joe Ambrose, vice-president of First Bank, says they've invested half-a-million dollars in that fund because it helps fill a gap in the market place that banks or other institutions couldn't fill. And, he says, we need small businesses.

“That’s the backbone of the growth for the region, and across the country but especially here in St. Louis the smaller companies, the startups that employ maybe two or three, maybe five people, are an important part of the economy overall,” he says.

Ambrose says there's new opportunity out there, like in north St. Louis with the new NGA facility and their increased investment here.

“We hope that funds, like the JP Emerging Markets fund, are available to the small businesses to help take advantage of this economic growth that we've got,” he says.

Justine Petersen is the nation's largest micro-lender for the US small business administration. It’s also based in St. Louis.