Business Incentives

Downtown Macon is already home to over a quarter of the region’s jobs. Businesses are attracted downtown for a variety of reasons including the ability to walk to dozens of restaurants for lunch, proximity to vendors or clients, and the ability to attract and retain talented young workers. There are many incentives to help you open, move or grow your business downtown.

Loans and Financing


In 2015, Founding Chair of NewTown, Dr. R. Kirby Godsey, launched the NewTown Initiatives Fund with a generous donation. This fund is a combination endowment and line of credit. With this fund, NewTown is able to consider a wide variety of loans, including business loans. Check out the Business Lending section of our website to learn more and apply.
Loans are available in amounts up to $20,000 for general business expenses. Interest rates are typically lower than market-rate. Contact Macon-Bibb Economic and Community Development Department to apply.
MGRC operates an in-house SBA loan program. The program can finance up to 40% of eligible business projects, but requires that new jobs be created by the project. Loans are available from $25,000 to $5,500,000 at market-rate interest with 10- to 20-year terms. Contact the Middle Georgia Regional Commission to apply
The Macon-Bibb County Urban Development Authority operates a loan program that can be used for tenant build-out or improvements by a property owner. Terms are generally 10 to fifteen years, with an interest rate of 2%. The program is limited to 40% of project costs and $200,000 and requires the participation of a private lender. Download the application.
The Main Street Macon Micro-Loan Fund was created to provide small loans to businesses that fall within Main Street Macon and the College Hill Corridor. Loans are available from a minimum of $500 and up to a maximum of $1,000. Every loan requires a 50% match from the borrower. Loans are meant to help start new businesses and/or increase the capacity of existing independent businesses. Eligible uses include:
Adding new product lines
Inventory control systems
Physical infrastructure
Equipment
Display Enhancements
Expanded Inventory
For more information about the micro-loan fund, please contact Main Street Macon.

Marketing

Marketing Grant

The Macon-Bibb County Economic and Community Development Department partnered with Main Street Macon to offer Marketing Grants of up to $1,500 to businesses in Macon-Bibb County. Applicants must develop a proposal for a marketing campaign including a budget. Applicants must also provide a 10% match for any grant award that is made. Instructions to apply can be found on the Main Street Macon website.


Tax Incentives

Opportunity Zone

Several locally-designated Opportunity Zones (OZ) are located in downtown, and most properties are eligible to be added to an OZ. Businesses located within an OZ are allowed a job tax credit of $3,500 per net 2 new full-time jobs (subject to other restrictions). This credit can be carried forward up to ten years and applies first to income tax liability, then to withholding.


Equity & Venture Capital


Thanks to a 2016 grant of $25,000 from the Downtown Challenge Fund at the Community Foundation of Central Georgia, NewTown Macon operates a venture capital fund for businesses seeking to open, expand or relocate to downtown Macon. If you are interested in soliciting an equity investment, the process is the same as applying for a business loan. Simply visit our business lending webpage and select that you are interested in offering NewTown an equity stake. Our staff and business loan committee will process your application, and if appropriate extend an equity offer to you.
The Central Piedmont Investment Group is an experienced team of business investors whose goal is to empower entrepreneurs in Middle Georgia with angel funding. To apply, you must have a business plan, your idea must be ready for market, you must have a customer base, you must be invested personally and your idea must have the potential to grow. You can learn more and apply for funding on their website.