Lender CIT Files for Bankruptcy

The Boston Business Journal reports that CIT Group Inc. filed for bankruptcy protection Sunday after its board of directors approved of a plan to reorganize the giant small business lender. The plan has also been approved by CIT’s creditors. “The decision to proceed with our plan of reorganization will allow CIT to continue to provide funding to our small business and middle market customers, two sectors that remain vitally important to the U.S. economy,” Chief Executive Jeffrey Peek said in a statement.

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Citizens Bank Sale Subject to Speculation

Tim Mclaughlin reports in the Boston Business Journal that Citizens Bank could get a new owner if the European Commission forces parent company Royal Bank of Scotland to sell more assets than what executives originally anticipated.
RBS, whose shares fell as much as 13 percent Monday, said in a brief statement that negotiations with the EC will include some divestments not initially contemplated.

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Quiznos Loans Franchisees Capital for Reimage Program

David Farkas reports in Chain Leader that to revitalize its brand, Quiznos is rolling out a new decor package and upgraded training. To get franchisees to buy in, the restaurant chain is loaning them the money. Quiznos is tempting franchisees with a low-interest rate on small loans to be used for remodeling the restaurants.

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Obama Asks for SBA Loan Expansion, Franchisees Agree

Don Sniegowski reports at BlueMauMau that President Barack Obama announced plans Wednesday afternoon to shift some of Wall Street’s bailout funds over to community banks in order to spur lending to small businesses, which has slowed to a trickle. With SBA administrator Karen Mills and Secretary of the Treasury Tim Geithner flanking him, President Obama made several announcements to boost small business.

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Obama: Still “A Long Way To Go” to Help Small Businesses

Henry Pulizzi of the New York Times rports that President Barack Obama unveiled initiatives to help small businesses, saying the U.S. has “a long way to go” to ensure that credit flows to an area of the economy hit hard by the recession.

“There is still too little credit flowing to our small businesses. There are still too many entrepreneurs who can’t get the loan they need to open their doors and start hiring,” Obama said in a speech at Landover, Md.-based Metropolitan Archives, a family-owned firm that stores and delivers paper files for large companies.

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Icahn offers CIT Group $6 billion loan

Stephen Bernard reports at Kansas City.com that activist investor Carl Icahn is offering struggling lender CIT Group a $6 billion lifeline. In a letter Monday to CIT’s board of directors, Icahn said he would give the company the loan to replace a debt restructuring plan CIT has asked bondholders to approve.

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Credit Tightens for Small Businesses

Peter Goodman reports at The New York Times that many small and midsize American businesses are still struggling to secure bank loans, impeding their expansion plans and constraining overall economic growth, even as the country tentatively rises from its recessionary depths. Most banks expect their lending standards to remain tighter than the levels of the last decade until at least the middle of 2010, according to a survey of senior loan officers conducted by the Federal Reserve Board.

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Franchise Industry Lobbies to Extend Small Business Tax Benefits

It may take months or even years before markets return to normal, yet a number of key tax measures that have helped small firms survive the downturn are set to expire, touching off a scramble on Capitol Hill to get them extended. The franchise industry, one of the biggest beneficiaries, has taken the lead in the lobbying effort as the clock winds down on several key tax incentives.

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CIT Group Amends Debt Restructuring Offer

The Associated Press reports that CIT Group Inc., a major lender to small and midsize businesses that struggled under mounting losses and tight credit availability, amended its debt restructuring offer to enlist more bondholder support for the plan. The troubled New York-based lender had launched the debt restructuring effort Oct. 1 with the hope that it will trim at least $5.7 billion from its near-term debt. It is also asking bondholders to approve a prepackaged reorganization plan in case it is forced to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

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Money-Saving, Profit-Boosting Strategies for Franchise Owners

In light of the current economic recession, Dunkin’ franchise owners are rightfully being even more vigilant about the bottom line. The DDIFO is mindful of this and wants to help its members identify ways to save money and boost profits. DDIFO Sponsor, Performance Business Solutions, LLC (PBS) and its sister company, MS Consultants, LLC offer services in areas franchisees might not be aware of that can make a significant difference in terms of reducing business expenses, particularly in the area of tax savings.

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