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Easy Small Business Startup Loans & Grants in Alabama

If you’re thinking about doing business in Alabama, maybe you should hear the not-so-good news first. According to Nerd Wallet, the number of people getting small business loans per the 100,000 is small. Only 15.38 out of 100,000 people got small business loans in 2015. And it only ranked number 42 out of the 50 plus Washington, D.C. for the number of entrepreneurs and start-ups in the state.

But there’s a true silver lining. Alabama is growing, and according to, 51 of the states business count among the fastest-growing private companies (as of 2015.)Small Business Loans in Alabama

So What Companies are on the List? based its research on an article in Inc., which rated the top 5000 companies that showed rapid growth. Of the two that made the top 500, Trident Technologies came in at number 68 and Thompson Gray ranked at 372. almost made the top 500 at 505.

And many of the businesses that landed on the top 500 list were in growth industries like tech and health. If anything, these companies and the other ones on the list show that it’s possible for a business to thrive in Alabama.

Other Thriving Businesses – Tourism

Would-be small-business owners in Alabama aren’t limited to starting tech companies in order to make money. Those who work in industries like tourism should find a friendly work environment. With destinations like the U.S. Space and Rocket Center and a beautiful coastline, Alabama attracts plenty of visitors each year.

According to a government brochure, 25 million people visited Alabama in 2015. They spent nearly $13 billion dollars in the state, nearly double what they did the year before. And travel and tourism represent 6.25 of the state’s GDP. Almost 176,000 jobs were attributed to travel and tourism in the state.

Banks in Alabama That Offer Small Business Loans

Below is a list of banks in Alabama that offer small business loans:

First Bank of Alabama

Having served residents of Alabama since 1848, the First Bank of Alabama provide loans for big purchases such as real estate, equipment financing, construction, and business expansion.

Alabama Credit Union

Alabama Credit Union is a non-profit banking institution established in 1956 in Tuscaloosa. It is most known for higher-than-average returns on savings, but it has since branched out to offer small business loans as well.

People’s Bank of Alabama

While the People’s Bank of Alabama only offers a few loan options to business owners, it still always aims to provide flexible interest rates and payment terms. This bank is owned by Altrust Financial Service, Inc. and broke ground in 1977.

North Alabama Bank

Named as Madison County’s “Hometown Bank of Choice,” small business owners will find a wide variety of loan products available in North Alabama Bank.

Live Oak Banking Co.

Based in Wilmington, North Carolina, Live Oak Banking Co. has provided the largest amount in government-backed small business loans in Alabama for the year of 2014 at $32 million.

Regions Bank

Regions Bank is a Birmingham-based bank that has loaned a total of $27 million to Alabaman small business owners in just one year.

Additional Thoughts on Doing Business Here

Alabama’s industries are also supported by a university system that can train and educate future employees. These higher learning institutions include the University of Alabama; the Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine; Auburn University; Community College of the Air Force; and Faulkner University to name but a few.

Finally, a number of banks offering small-business loans to would-be entrepreneurs call Alabama home. Below, you’ll find a list of a few of them plus links to more.

SBA-Friendly Banks in Alabama

First Metro Bank

406 West Avalon Avenue
Muscle Shoals, AL 35661
Phone: 256-386-0600
Fax: 256-386-0651
Website Contact/ Hours

Citizens Bank & Trust (Albertville Office)
324 N Broad St
Albertville, AL 35950
Phone: 256-878-9893
Fax: 256-279-0013
Website Contact/ Hours

Premier Bank of the South
PO Box 1708
Cullman, AL 35056
Main Office: 256-737-9900
Website Contact/ Hours

This list is not comprehensive. To see all the banks that offer small business loans, refer to this SBA document.

Top Alabama Cities and Their Lenders

Alabama has several prominent cities – many have local lenders that provide financing to small business owners in the area. If you’re thinking of starting a business in the area, it’s important that you choose the right city. Below we will take a look at Alabama’s largest cities and what lenders are currently operating in the area.

Birmingham, Alabama

Birmingham is the largest city in the state of Alabama. The area played home to much of the civil unrest during the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s. In modern day, Birmingham plays home to a host of small businesses. There are several lenders in the area, check them out below:

National Bank of Commerce

The National Bank of Commerce is one of the largest commercial lenders in Birmingham. The lender provides loans to individuals throughout the region, but is headquartered in Birmingham. They’re a perfect choice if you want a local lender with the strength of a national institution.

Alabama Credit Union

Alabama Credit Union provides small business loans to businesses in the state of Alabama. While they’re not headquartered in Birmingham, they still provide loans to business owners in the city.

Montgomery, Alabama

Montgomery is the second largest city in Alabama – the area is well-known for being small business friendly. The economy has traditionally been dependent on agriculture, but has diversified in recent years. Check out your local lender options below:

Alabama Credit Union

Alabama Credit Union is a mid-sized lender that provides small business loans to businesses in the state of Alabama. The lender is headquartered in Montgomery – making it the perfect choice for borrowers wanting a local partner.

Western Shamrock

Western Shamrock is one of the most popular local lenders in Montgomery – they have an office located in the city. They’re another good option if you want to work with a company that has a local presence in Montgomery.

Mobile, Alabama

Mobile is the port city of Alabama. The area’s economy benefits off its proximity to major shipping networks. Below are the area’s top small business lenders:

First Community Bank

First Community Bank provides small business loans to customers in Mobile, Alabama. They have four different types of business loans on offer – they’re sure to have a loan that suits the needs of your business.

Alabama Credit Union

The Alabama Credit Union is another lender that has commercial clients in the Mobile, Alabama region. They’re perfect if you want a lender that can also provide you with consumer finance – they have a wide variety of financing offers.

Huntsville, Alabama

Huntsville, Alabama is located in close proximity to some of the state’s best nature land – there are various hiking trails and state parks in the region. The small business community in the area is thriving. Check out your options for local lenders below:

Redstone Federal Credit Union

Redstone Federal Credit Union is the largest local lender in Alabama. This federal credit union has developed an extensive commercial lending client base in the area. While they service most of the state, the majority of their clients are in Huntsville.

Alabama Credit Union

Like many of the other cities on this list, Alabama Credit Union has a client base in Huntsville.

Tuscaloosa, Alabama

Tuscaloosa is well-known for being home of the University of Alabama. Most of the commerce in the region is dependent on the local college campus. Check out the small business lenders in the area below:


LiftFund is a small lender that provides startup loans to businesses in Tuscaloosa. They’re a great option if your business doesn’t have a credit history.


BankFirst is located in Mississippi, but they have a presence in the Tuscaloosa, Alabama region. If you need a lender with a bit more power than LiftFund, this is a good choice!

Hoover, Alabama

Hoover, Alabama is often considered a part of Birmingham – but the area has a collection of its own local lenders. Check out your options below:

Fidelity Bank

Fidelity Bank has a local office in Hoover, Alabama. They’re one of the largest small business lenders in the area that maintains an office in the city!

Regional Finance

Regional Finance is a lender that provides small business loans to businesses throughout the South of the country. They have a brick-and-mortar location in Hoover.

Dothan, Alabama

Dothan is a small city in the state of Alabama that is largely dependent on manufacturing and the local medical industry. If you open a business in the area, the following lenders will be your best option:

Western Shamrock

As mentioned previously, Western Shamrock provides loans to small businesses throughout Alabama. They have a physical location in Dothan, Alabama.

Commercial Bank of Ozark

Dothan, Alabama plays home to the Commercial Bank of Ozark. This small lender provides both consumer and commercial banking.

Decatur, Alabama

Decatur is one of the most scenic cities in the state of Alabama – its located on the banks of the Tennessee River. Below are the different lending options available to you:

Global Finance, Inc.

Global Finance, Inc. is a local lender headquartered in Decatur, Alabama. They provide commercial loans to business owners in the area.

OneMain Financial

OneMain Financial also operates a physical location in Decatur. They provide both commercial and consumer loans.

Auburn, Alabama

Auburn is the second-largest college town in the state of Alabama – it plays home to the University of Auburn. If you open a business in the area, you only have one major lender to choose from:


If you’re looking for a small business loan, AuburnBank is your best option in Auburn. They’re the only major lender that has a physical presence in the area – they focus heavily on helping Auburn based businesses thrive.

Madison, Alabama

Madison, Alabama is often considered part of the Huntsville, Alabama region. But the small city has a local commercial lender of its own. Check out your best option below:

OneMain Financial

There aren’t many local lending options in the Madison, Alabama region. You’ll need to work with OneMain Financial if you want to work with a company that has a brick-and-mortar location.

Final Thoughts on Business in Alabama

Although the state has ranked lower on the Nerd Wallet index for people getting small-business loans, Alabama has many thriving private businesses and industries. It additionally has an excellent education system to help train up future employees and beautiful landscapes. These beautiful places attract tourists and residents alike. All in all, it’s a lovely place for a business owner to call home and to start a thriving business in the process.


Remember, some of these companies or banks are very specialized and may only handle SBA loans or a business line of credit. Ask them about any special programs for minorities or women. Also ask for information about business grants for startups if that interest you. If you bad credit don't worry as there still may be other alternative lenders willing to work with you.