Frank started The Point Coffee Shop after retiring from a long career working for the City of Jacksonville. His coffee shop gives a lot to the community: down home cooking, employment opportunities, and a meeting space for local organizations. Our partnership with Lending Club connected Frank with the working capital loan he needed to keep his business strong, so he can focus on helping his hometown thrive.

Our customers inspire us every day, and we want to regularly share those stories to inspire you, too.

Frank started The Point Coffee Shop after retiring from a long career working for the City of Jacksonville. His coffee shop gives a lot to the community: down home cooking, employment opportunities, and a meeting space for local organizations. Our partnership with Lending Club connected Frank with the working capital loan he needed to keep his business strong, so he can focus on helping his hometown thrive.

Changing Careers While Staying Focused on Community

Frank Lyons started The Point Coffee Shop in Jacksonville, Fla. in 2014. The Point is more than just a friendly neighborhood diner. Aside from serving unique crab patty breakfasts, Frank also serves his community through local advocacy and job creation.

Frank helped shape local policy and create job opportunities for minority workers over a career that spanned four decades working for the City of Jacksonville with local government officials in roles like Fire Chief and executive for Jacksonville Electric Authority. “I was privileged to help change some things in Jacksonville,” Frank said. “I’m still trying to.”

After retirement, Frank saw a chance to keep working in the community by opening his restaurant. In addition to the neighborhood seniors who come in for a hot, home cooked breakfast, local organizations seek out The Point as a neighborhood hub.

The Point Coffee Shop

Frank turned his coffee shop into a neighborhood fixture with good food and good company (photo courtesy of Jack Edwards)

“I host meetings here at my business,” Frank said. “Neighborhood pastors, people from the Teacher’s Association, and the Community Association come here. We took an area that wasn’t as active and available to the community, and now people love it.”

Frank needed working capital to help purchase equipment. Like many small business owners, Frank had to dig deep to start his business and keep it going. “I started this business on a shoestring,” he said. “I had to do it out of pocket after a business partner bowed out. I was determined to make this business work, so I stayed with it.”

Growing the Business Within the Neighborhood

Despite running a successful business for years, Frank had few options for business lending. “We heard a lot of promises, but nothing real,” he said.

Opportunity Fund business loan advisor Rexie Dumagan helped close a $14,000 loan in November 2017.  “Nobody else would help us,” Frank said. “Opportunity Fund got us to where we needed to be and where we are today.”

The Point’s impact as a hyper-local small business extends to all aspects of the community. Frank’s five employees all live in the neighborhood, close enough to walk to work every day. His unstoppable entrepreneurial spirit and local pride are driving forces behind The Point’s upcoming expansion. “I acquired a building down the street that holds 60 people,” Frank said. “Right now, my shop has a capacity of about 22. We get to stay in the neighborhood while expanding our business.”

We’re proud to support locally-oriented business owners like Frank, and we’re honored to watch our small business loans drive positive change in communities in Florida and beyond.

We hope this story has inspired you, too.  At Opportunity Fund, we offer easy-to-get, fast, and affordable small business loans to help small business owners succeed.  Visit our home page to find out more.


Loans are subject to credit review. Additional documentation may be required for credit approval. We are an Equal Opportunity Lender. Loans will be made or arranged pursuant to California Department of Corporations Finance Lenders License #6050609.

Opportunity Fund is tackling economic inequality so that hard work and perseverance means a shot at getting ahead, not just struggling to get by. Our programs are supported by a community of donors and investors whose contributions help to fund small businesses, support college students, and build stronger families and vibrant neighborhoods. Since 1994, the team has deployed $600 million and helped 20,000 families earn, save and invest in their own futures. Opportunity Fund has earned a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator, America’s largest independent charity evaluator, for our commitment to accountability and transparency.

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