Million-dollar partnership to spur business growth

Tuesday, December 04, 2018

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A partnership formed between Great River Energy and The Entrepreneur Fund will benefit small businesses and entrepreneurs in the two organizations’ shared service areas with a $1 million program loan provided by Great River Energy.

An event held Thursday, Aug. 16, at Clyde Iron Works in Duluth, Minn., celebrated this venture with a check presentation.

“It is so important to continue to support entrepreneurship and growth in our region,” said Shawn Wellnitz, Entrepreneur Fund CEO. “This funding from Great River Energy – some of the largest we’ve received so far in 2018 – will be beneficial in many different facets.”

For more than 29 years, the Entrepreneur Fund has provided flexible financing and strategic services to entrepreneurs, stimulating growth in the region. Headquartered in Duluth, the Entrepreneur Fund works with people in 11 counties in northeast Minnesota and northwest Wisconsin.

As a cooperative, Great River Energy is committed to helping its member-owner cooperatives foster economic development in their communities by working closely with statewide and regional organizations like the Entrepreneur Fund.

“Great River Energy is proud to expand our partnership with the Entrepreneur Fund and further support the growth of entrepreneurs, start-ups and small businesses in northern Minnesota. Together with our member cooperatives, we continue to look for ways to support our rural communities,” said Great River Energy President and CEO David Saggau.

Prior to this formal partnership, the Entrepreneur Fund and Great River Energy’s member-owner cooperatives had worked together to support economic development and entrepreneurship with several organizations, including a manufacturer in Grand Rapids and an assisted living residence with multiple locations in north central Minnesota.

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