April 7, 2022 • Company Feed Highlights, News, Scale Community, Team

ScaleCo vs. SBA

Which option is right for you?

Entrepreneurs who have considered entrepreneurship through acquisition (ETA) as a career choice have likely heard of a Small Business Association (SBA) Loan. The U.S. Small Business Administration helps small businesses get access to capital and funding by setting guidelines for loans and reducing lender risk. Although this is an extremely viable path for many entrepreneurs, ScaleCo offers a different approach to business ownership.

With ScaleCo’s 20-year track-record of investing in and growing small cap businesses, our investment firm is looking for those seeking capital to complete their transaction. ScaleCo is a platform for talented Operating Partners interested in business leadership and ownership. These individuals are often executives with specific industry experience, who are drawn to running a business. ScaleCo looks for profitable companies that have experienced plateaued growth. We match these companies with an experienced Operating Partner, working closely with management to develop a shared vision and growth plan. However, ScaleCo’s Operating Partners’ have historically presented companies they are interested in growing. We provide entrepreneurs with access to deal flow, capital, and strategic resources to grow and scale small businesses. So, how does working with ScaleCo look different than an SBA Loan?


  • Backed by ScaleCo Team
  • Up to 20% Ownership
  • ScaleCo Partnership & Support
  • Opportunity for Wealth Creation
  • Downside Protected
  • No Personal Guarantees
  • Professional Due Diligence Support
  • No Cash Deposit
  • Deal Flow Resources and Support
  • Reserved Capital for Add-On Acquisitions
  • Credibility and Exposure

SBA Loan (Traditional)

  • SBA Financing
  • 100% Ownership
  • Independent Leadership
  • Opportunity for Wealth Creation
  • No Downside Protection
  • Personal Guarantees Required
  • Minimal Professional Due Diligence Support
  • 10% Minimum Cash Deposit
  • Minimal, Independent Deal Flow
  • Reserved Capital for Add-On Acquisitions
  • Credibility and Exposure

Defaulting on an SBA Loan is akin to bankruptcy that follows the borrower for much longer than regular bankruptcy. While an SBA loan offers a more independent approach, there is more personal risk involved. In contrast, ScaleCo provides benefits to owner operators with “no downside” (we do not require a guarantee). We encourage entrepreneurs to participate in the investment, with up to a 20% stake. ScaleCo’s model is unique and provides entrepreneurs with an opportunity to create transformational wealth with a strategic partner who has “done it before”. Our team of operational professionals work actively in our investments, providing roadmaps, resources, and support starting at ground zero.

Entrepreneurship is not “one size fits all” and may look different from one leader to the next. At ScaleCo, we have a passion for entrepreneurship, and enjoy helping business owners and operators succeed. If you or someone you know may be interested in learning more about what ScaleCo can offer, or if you have a business that needs growth financing, please fill out the form below to contact our team.

About ScaleCo

ScaleCo Capital is a Cleveland-based lower middle market private equity firm that focuses on control-oriented leveraged buyout and growth equity investments in fast-growing companies based primarily in the Great Lakes region. ScaleCo partners with companies in the verticals of business services, tech-enabled services, value added distribution and assembly, and training, compliance, and education sectors, bringing operational expertise and strategic resources to scale their growth potential and build long-term value. To learn more, visit scaleco.com.

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