New York City-based chef Russell Jackson says finding financing for his restaurants has always been a balancing act. But the current combination of high interest rates, high inflation and tight credit has made it more precarious than ever.
Since his latest venture, a fine-dining restaurant called Reverence, opened in late 2019, Jackson has kept the operation running with a changing concoction of personal savings, Small Business Administration loans, Paycheck Protection Program funding, private grants, community donations and his first-ever corporate credit card, which is already maxed out.
Now, having racked up debt that he says hovers in the six figures, Jackson’s challenge is two-fold. He’s trying to secure another line of credit that would allow him to expand into a second location, while figuring out how to afford soaring interest payments on the debt he already owes.
“We went from manageable to unmanageable very, very quickly, because the interest rates basically quadrupled,” Jackson told Barron’s from his Harlem-based restaurant.
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