The University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Haslam College of Business at the University of Tennessee Anderson Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation. Haslam College of Business at the University of Tennessee


Debt (via a loan) is a great way to retain complete and total ownership of your company.  Your ability to secure a loan for starting your business depends on several factors, including:

Typically, the first avenue for securing a loan to start your business is through leveraging your existing assets; for example, a home equity loan.  This puts your living situation at risk, but often will be the source you need to convince other potential investors that you are committed to starting your business.

Another option is a Small Business Administration (SBA) loan.  Many of the banks the SBA works with require collateral, but some do not.  UT Federal Credit Union is a preferred provider of SBA loans in the Knoxville area.

Once your company begins to generate revenues and profits, Pathway Lending is a statewide provider of loans to small businesses that lack access to traditional bank financing. 

Convertible debt also can be an option for companies that issue stock. This allows you to borrow money that can be converted to equity (shares of your company) at a future date.

Anderson Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation ~ 418 Haslam Business Building
Knoxville, TN ~ 37996-4140 ~ Phone: (865) 974-5126 ~ Email:

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The University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Big Orange. Big Ideas.

Knoxville, Tennessee 37996 | 865-974-1000
The flagship campus of the University of Tennessee System