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RIEDC Small Business Loan Fund Corporation Approves $400,000 in Loans to Two Rhode Island Companies

Two Rhode Island small businesses recently received approval for $400,000 in financing through the Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation's (RIEDC) Small Business Loan Fund.

"Providing companies with access to capital makes doing business easier in Rhode Island and allows small businesses to stay competitive and create or retain jobs in the state," said RIEDC Executive Director Marcel A. Valois. "In this round of approvals, we are helping both a start-up and an established Rhode Island business, representing the full spectrum of our economy."

Newport-based start-up Meridian Ocean Services, LLC, was approved for a $250,000 loan to help purchase underwater research vehicles and provide working capital. Meridian is a mid-water subsea inspection and survey company using remote operating vehicles (ROVs) and autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs) to provide critical surveying and inspection services across multiple industries, including offshore oil and gas. The company has already established a strong reputation in the industry, having won a competitive bid process with the State of Louisiana to inspect artificial reefs in the Gulf of Mexico and having completed work for the U.S. Navy. The firm is actively searching for full-time technical staff and expects to hire a total of 13 employees in 2013.

S&M Appliance Service Corp., headquartered in Smithfield, RI, was approved for a $150,000 loan as they are in the process of purchasing their current facility. S&M Appliance Service Corp. was founded in 1953 by Harold Steward and Joe Murray specializing in the sale, installation and repair of gas-fired hot water heaters and space heaters. Since, the company has evolved into a distributor and servicer of high-end gas grills, pellet stoves and gas space heating appliances. S&M currently employs nine and has plans to add an additional two full-time employees within the next two years.

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