Know Your Neighbor – Craft3

By: Katie Meyer - Apr 29, 2015
Source: Parkrose Business Association


Ana Inclán, Business Lender

What does your business do/sell?

Craft3 is a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) – a nonprofit, non-bank organization that makes loans to businesses, individuals and nonprofits that may not qualify for conventional financing. We have a high-risk tolerance and our interest rates reflect that; we don’t compete with banks.

Our mission is to strengthen economic, ecological and family resilience in Pacific NW communities. We believe Portland’s six NPI districts, including Parkrose, are investing in resilience and so we’ve partnered with PDC to focus there. Another focus includes businesses owned by women, veterans, minorities and immigrants; businesses that create living wage jobs, such as renewable energy production and manufacturing; and public and private agencies that provide essential services, such as Child Care, to their communities. We seek to make short-term loans that have a high impact.

While Ana focuses on business and nonprofit loans, Craft3 also offers commercial loans for land conservation and in Indian Country. It also provides homeowners with loans for energy-efficiency updates and septic system replacements.

When did the business start?

Craft3 was started 20 years ago in Ilwaco, on the Washington coast, a joint venture of EcoTrust and ShoreBank. The two founders, John Berdes and Mike Dickerson still lead the company.

How did you get involved in lending?

I was an accounting major and worked for PricewaterhouseCoopers after college. From there, I joined the Portland Development Commission (PDC) budget office. The CFO at the time knew about my accounting background and suggested I consider business lending; I spend the next six years in their lending department and then joined Craft3 for the NPI partnership.

When did you start work in Parkrose and Why?

We started to focus on Parkrose when it was named a Neighborhood Prosperity Initiative district (NPI) and the ‘Historic Parkrose’ revitalization program was born. The energy and resources that come along with the revitalization effort really leverage what Craft3 can do.

What makes your business unique?

We offer what we like to call ‘Capital Plus.’ That means we offer expertise in addition to financing. One of our greatest strengths is our ability and drive to connect resources with each other.

What is something interesting about yourself?

I was an early adopter of urban chicken keeping in 2002! Food gardening is a major interest of mine. I was a former board member of ‘Growing Gardens’ and am a current member of a Tree Care Team for the ‘Portland Fruit Tree Project.’