Craft3 gets federal support

By: DA Staff - Oct 10, 2016
Source: The Daily Astorian
Local nonprofit lender Craft3 has received some major federal support for its efforts.

U.S. Rep. Suzanne Bonamici, D-Oregon, and U.S. Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Washington, announced a $750,000 grant from the Community Development Financial Institutions Fund, a program of the U.S. Department of the Treasury, to help Craft3 support local businesses.

“Businesses in Northwest Oregon and throughout the region are growing, but it takes resources and capital for them to expand and thrive,” Bonamici said in a release. “This investment from the U.S. Department of Treasury will help Craft3 continue to make business loans in our area, which adds jobs and boosts economic development.

“As a trusted community financial institution, Craft3 has invested close to $400 million in area businesses, creating or retaining almost 11,500 jobs. This grant will support their efforts to make our economy more vibrant and resilient.”

Craft3, started along the Lower Columbia River in 1994 by the late John Berdes, has grown to eight locations across Oregon and Washington state. Adam Zimmerman, president and CEO of Craft3, said in the release the grant would help the lender continue building strong, resilient economies where small businesses thrive.

“We’d like to thank Representatives Bonamici and Herrera Beutler for their support of that mission — and for fighting in Congress for annual funding that helps entrepreneurs have the capital resources they need to be successful,” he said.

The Community Development Financial Institutions Fund started in 1994, and has since awarded more than $2.2 billion to community development organizations and financial institutions to generate economic growth and opportunity across the nation.

Rural development

Craft3 also received access to $20 million in low-interest community facilities loan capital from U.S. Department of Agriculture’s rural development program, and a $2 million grant from Northwest Area Foundation. The money will support the development of community facilities in rural and tribal communities across the Pacific Northwest.

“Lack of capital in tribal communities means a lack of opportunity — and that lack of opportunity has helped create generational, persistent poverty,” Zimmerman said in a release. “We’re proud to be partnering with USDA Rural Development and the Northwest Area Foundation on Uplift America to make critical investments that improve quality of life, reduce poverty, improve access to capital, and create jobs.”