Regional Financing

GPS Has Regional Funding Opportunities

There are a number of funding sources for firms locating within the GPS Region. These funding programs are designed to address a variety of financial challenges. The following provide a general overview of the programs. The GPS staff will work with you to obtain the appropriate funding from the appropriate sources.

The Initiative Foundation

The Initiative Foundation provides a range of programs to help finance businesses.

Business Loans

The Direct Business Loan Fund is designed to help central Minnesota companies create or retain quality jobs by filling gaps in business financing packages. Targeted industries include manufacturing, technology-based business sectors and value-added agriculture.

Technology Business Loans

The Technology Capital Fund is designed to help central Minnesota entrepreneurs launch emerging technology ventures and help established companies integrate proven productivity applications into their business operations and processes. Recognizing that conventional and alternative lending practices may not be flexible enough for technology-based businesses, the Initiative Foundation may choose to waive certain collateral requirements.

Green Business Loans

The Green Business Loan Fund targets entrepreneurs whose products and services help to protect and preserve the environment—recycling, renewable energy, waste transformation and emerging technology that reduces negative impacts on the environment. An equally important purpose of the fund is to reduce poverty by attracting profitable companies and living-wage jobs to low-income communities.

Small Business Loan Guaranties

The Microenterprise Loan Guaranty Fund is designed to increase local ownership or expansion of small businesses, especially among underserved populations who may find it difficult to access capital through traditional lending institutions. The fund protects banks and lenders against loan default by underwriting up to $50,000 through a simple guarantee contract.

Seed Investments

The Seed Capital Fund is designed to further emerging entrepreneurial ventures by financing product concept, development and market research. Preference is given to projects exhibiting potential for substantial growth through the introduction of new products and services. In return for Seed Capital Fund investments, the Initiative Foundation may negotiate company equity or royalties that reflect the incurred risk.

For all of these programs, Initiative Foundation business financing programs meet the “gap” between the financing a local lender is able to provide and the equity the owner is able to contribute. Financial participation by a local lender is required.

ECRDC Revolving Loan Fund (RLF)

The East Central Regional Development Commission (ECRDC) has established a Revolving Loan Fund for business development. It is designated to offer financing primarily to private manufacturing projects on a long-term basis. Projects MUST be located within Isanti, Kanabec, Mille Lacs or Pine Counties.

The purpose of the RLF is to

  • Create or retain permanent, private sector, full-time jobs
  • Provide capital for business development and expansion within the region
  • Achieve maximum number of jobs per loan fund dollar.
  • Bolster the tax bases of local units of government.

Need Criterion

It is the policy and purpose of the RLF Committee to provide gap financing to business projects that offer job creation and private investment gains to the regional economy.

To receive the full loan application packet and guidelines call (320) 679-4065 ext. 29.

The Initiative Foundation provided a loan that complimented our equipment loans.  They came in and provided funds to help us with start-up costs, operating capital and inventory.  Their participation helped our business get started.

Paul Johnson,
LEI Packaging