ACCION USA provides loans and services to small businesses like Carmen Ladesma's beauty school.
Headquarters: New York, N.Y.
Number of loans: 1,330

This lender serves all types of businesses across the country, especially home-based ones.

These include caterers, street vendors, and ''even small and successful restaurants, [which] have a lot of trouble accessing credit due to the risk of those industries,'' said director Erika Eurkus.

In 2008, the organization disbursed 1, 330 loans. Between January and May of this year, it closed 255, with $2.2 million in funding, according to CEO Paul Quintero. ''That means we close 2.6 loans every business day,'' he said.

ACCION USA, like many microlenders, also boasts of its clients' success rates: While the Small Business Administration (SBA) says that 30% of companies will fail before reaching the two-year mark, all of ACCION USA's businesses older than two years are thriving.

Source: The top 10 largest microlenders were taken from the U.S. Microenterprise Census, conducted in 2009 by FIELD at the Aspen Institute. The list , which is the most recent from the Institute, presents results based on the number of microloans (loans of $35,000 or less) disbursed by 362 U.S. microlenders throughout fiscal year 2008.

Half of the microlenders on this list are ACCION nonprofits. ACCION is a large microfinance organization that is charged with helping startups and small businesses. The ACCION microlenders have the same name and similar mission statements, but each focuses on its own region and is autonomous.
Last updated July 15 2011: 3:46 PM ET
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