San Diego Business Journal

The loans disbursed in 2016 by nonprofit San Diego-based microlender Accion helped maintain or generate 730 jobs, the organization said in its recently published annual report.

Accion gave 248 loans totaling more than $3.5 million to Southern California entrepreneurs in 2016. The average loan size in 2016 was $14,285, the report said.

The nonprofit lender’s loan portfolio reached a record of nearly $5.8 million in 2016, up 16 percent from 2015.

In recent years the organization has expanded its service areas to Imperial County, which it entered in July 2015, and Riverside and San Bernardino counties, which it added in January 2016. Lending in Imperial County totaled $286,100 in 2016, which was disbursed in 22 loans, up from 13 loans totaling $110,000 in 2015, the organization said.

To support the geographic expansion Accion added seven new employees and opened offices in El Centro, Palm Springs and Riverside in 2016, the report said.

The organization has disbursed nearly 4,000 loans in its 22-year history. Since inception in 1994 the organization has lent more than $30 million to more than 2,600 clients. Its historical loss rate is 7 percent, Accion said in the report.