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  • Northern Initiatives invests in small businesses to drive economic growth in northern Michigan communities

    Sep 23, 2014 by

    Sitting atop the northern border of the United States, the families of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula can feel a world apart from the rest of the state and the country. Surrounded by three of the Great Lakes and only connected by land to neighboring Wisconsin, Upper Peninsula residents live with the challenges of distance, isolation and seasonality – along with the changing dynamics of the global economy – resulting in stagnant business growth and economic decline.

    However, an innovative lending partner in the region – Northern Initiatives – is making connections that others will not, investing in small businesses and providing the resources they need to start and grow, sparking local economies and creating much-needed jobs for local families. As a community development financial institution (CDFI), Northern Initiatives is committed to developing economies across northern Michigan.

    “We make loans in high potential entrepreneurs that banks can’t do, won’t do or shouldn’t do,” said Dennis West, president of Northern Initiatives. West added that Northern Initiatives is a community development lender that can make investments in rural communities to businesses that might not otherwise be bankable, due to things like lack of previous experience, credit problems or sufficient capital. In fact, many of our clients have been referred to us by community bankers.”

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