Entrepreneurs having trouble securing a bank loan may feel stranded and unsure of what to do next. Looking to places other than banks for financial support may be the reality for many small business owners this year. Knowing where to find alternative capital is essential.

Perhaps the best place to seek funds for a franchise opportunity is from the franchisor. As credit continues to be hard to obtain, more and more franchisers are becoming lenders, the New York Times reported this week. Others are cutting franchise fees or allowing owners to pay back the fees over time.

"Any small businessman is going to be very challenged getting financing without franchisor assistance," Ken Switzer, chief financial officer of Marco's Pizza Franchising, told the Times. "It's virtually impossible on their own, without our help."

The Entrepreneur also suggests looking into getting an unsecured business line of credit. This option is especially good for companies that need less than $100,000. Liquidating both personal and business assets are also options if a franchisee is hoping to save his or her company.

As reported by the International Franchise Association, franchisees will be seeking more than $10.1 billion in funds this year. Banks, however, will only lend $6.7 billion.




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