Pursuit Lending wins $1M support from Spectrum

Spectrum parent starts $10M community loan fund

Larry Rulison

Updated: Feb. 27, 2020 4:23 p.m.

ROTTERDAM — Charter Communications, the parent company of Spectrum cable TV, is creating a new community loan fund that will make $10 million in loans to local community development lenders throughout the country where it has operations.

That includes New York, where the new Spectrum Community Investment Loan Fund will loan $1 million to an Albany-based community loan fund known as Pursuit Community Finance that had previously been called the Excelsior Growth Fund. Community loan funds provide small business loans to businesses that otherwise might have trouble getting traditional bank loans. Similar loans are planned in Texas and Ohio, two of the cable giant’s biggest markets outside of New York.

In a news release issued Thursday, Charter said that it will provide each loan-fund recipient with a separate additional grant for “additional training and technical expertise.”

“Charter is committed to having a meaningful impact in the communities where our customers and employees live and work, and the Loan Fund is the latest Spectrum Community Impact program designed to do just that,” Tom Rutledge, CEO of Charter Communications, said in a statement. “Through these investments in local small businesses, Charter will positively impact financially underserved communities by providing growth capital, creating new jobs and strengthening businesses.”

“Pursuit welcomes the Charter investment, which will help catalyze responsible lending to neighborhood small businesses in communities throughout New York State,” Steve Cohen, president of Pursuit Community Finance said in a statement.  “It is noteworthy to have a public company express a commitment to community lending alongside our more typical bank investors.”

Larry Rulison has been a reporter for the Albany Times Union since 2005. His decades-long career in journalism began in 1994 when he was hired as the editor for a small-town upstate New York weekly known as the Canastota Bee-Journal. He later worked at the Fayetteville Eagle Bulletin, the Baldwinsville Messenger and the Adirondack Daily Enterprise in Saranac Lake. He has covered business since 1998, working for Mutual Fund Market News in Boston and later the Baltimore Business Journal and Philadelphia Business Journal. Larry’s reporting for the Times Union has won several awards for business and investigative journalism from the New York State Associated Press Association and the New York News Publishers Association.

Contact him at (518) 454-5504 or by e-mail at lrulison@timesunion.com.