Loans to support ventures with alternative ownership models 

RSF supports the growing movement of ventures using alternative business structures designed to provide value to all stakeholders – not only shareholders.

We seek to partner with worker-owned cooperatives and other ventures that are redefining business ownership and governance structures while helping lead the transition from an extractive to a regenerative economy.

Apply for a loan from RSF

Loan options

We offer a variety of loan options including mortgage loans, construction loans, equipment loans, and working capital lines of credit for social enterprises that are creating positive impact in the areas of food and agriculture, education and the arts, and climate and the environment.

RSF’s loans have supported member cooperatives, worker cooperatives, trust models, and other types of ventures built on alternative ownership models.


Enterprises with alternative ownership structures that are eligible for financing from RSF must be incorporated in the U.S. or Canada and be able to show a demonstrated commitment to creating positive social or environmental change. General criteria for borrowers includes:

Annual revenue of at least $750,000

Excellent history of repayment on debt

Two or more years of operating history

Ability to provide collateral (which may include pledges or guarantees)

Operating cash flow positive or can demonstrate a path to an operating cash flow surplus in 12-24 months

Needs ranging from $200,000 to $5 million

Get started

Complete our simple loan application to get the process started.

Apply today
Working with RSF

Borrowing from RSF to support your mission-driven enterprise will be a different experience as we take a relationship-based approach with all of our clients. We work exclusively with impact-focused organizations and impact investors are our capital source.

We also know it takes more than capital to scale impact. Aside from loans, RSF’s integrated capital approach means we also provide network connections, advisory support and other forms of non-financial resources.

Equal Exchange

For over 35 years, Equal Exchange has been a fair trade provider of high quality, organic coffee, chocolate, cocoa, and other products. Equal Exchange is a worker cooperative based on democratic principles and dedicated to sourcing products from similarly democratic cooperatives and farmer associations. Since 2014, RSF has supported Equal Exchange with a mortgage loan and additional loans to address coffee leaf rust, one of the largest challenges within the coffee supply chain.

Organically Grown Co

For over 40 years, Organically Grown Company (OGC) has been aggregating and distributing organically grown produce across the Pacific Northwest. In 2018, OGC made a bold move to buy back all shares from its stockholders and transfer them to the Sustainable Food & Agriculture Perpetual Purpose Trust, which will hold 100% of the ownership rights and ensure that the company delivers positive economic, social, and environmental impact and maintains its independence in perpetuity. RSF provided a loan to help buy out OGC’s shareholders and recapitalize the business.

Lending practices

RSF prioritizes lending to organizations that demonstrate broad, meaningful community benefits. We seek to partner with ventures that are committed to serving historically marginalized people of color, women, indigenous communities, and rural and low-income regions.

Loan process

Timing and steps to receive a loan

Learn more
Frequently asked questions
  • Does RSF fund conversions to cooperative ownership? 

    We’d love to consider your organization! We’ll need to understand the capital necessary to complete the conversion, the timeline and the plan for managing the conversion. Please apply.

  • Does RSF measure and report on impact?

    Yes, RSF uses the RSF Impact Assessment (RIA) to collect qualitative and quantitative impact information from borrower partners. The RIA is part of a multi-year effort to gather impact information which will be used to inform RSF management decisions, report RSF’s community impact in aggregate, and support individual borrower impact goals. The assessment seeks to embed Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) principles throughout the assessment as a priority focus on understanding borrower impact in communities. 

    RIA questions fall into six categories: Impact Model, Community and Field Building, Organizational Structure and Employee Experience, Resource Management and Supply Chain, Leadership and Organizational Culture, and Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI). 

    The assessment survey takes about an hour to complete and we ask that it be updated annually so we can track and support progress over time. 

More questions?


Michael Jones
Vice President, Lending Business Development