Patricia Black is a loan officer at a small, local bank. One day, she comes in to work, sits at her desk, and looks over her messages, when up to her desk comes hopping a young male frog, holding a little bag. “Good Morning,” says Patty. “Can I help you?” “I hope so,” says the frog. “The bigger banks have refused my loan application. See, I have a plan for a business, but not enough capital. So I could use a loan, to get things off the ground.”
Ms. Black, being a kind soul, decides to help the frog. “Well,” she says, “do you have any character references or collateral?” “Well my Dad is Mick Jagger, and for collateral I have this.” The frog opens up his bag and takes out a little porcelain figurine. “It’s an antique, rare Hummel that I inherited from my grandmother. I think it has some value.” Patty looks at the figurine, and asks if she can show it to her manager. The frog agrees.
So she goes to her boss’ office, holding the figurine. The boss looks up from his work and says, “What do you need, Patricia?” “Well…” she explains about the frog, his business plan, and the antique. “I’m not sure what to make of this. What do you think about it, Mr. Woods?”
The boss takes the figurine, turns it over a few times, then hands it back to her and says: “It’s a knick-knack, Patty Black. Give the frog a loan! His old man’s a Rol….ling… Stone.
You might not be a Jagger but have you ever thought of starting your own business? Financing options are available to you here in Tama County. One of these very helpful resources is the Small Business Development Center at the University of Northern Iowa.
I recently met with Dan Beenken. Dan is the manager of Incubation Services and director of the Development Center. I found Dan to be very well rounded resource. Prior to coming to UNI, Dan lived in Minneapolis for about nine years working for a Venture Capital firm and an investment bank. Dan earned his undergraduate degree from Iowa State and during his time in Minneapolis, his MBA at the University of Minnesota. He and his wife own a home décor and antique shop in Waverly, Iowa called The Changing Season.
Some of the areas where Dan’s Center can assist include: traditional lending – collateral, money down, business plan preparation; local options – revolving loan funds; Iowa micro loan; Small Business Administration offerings and how they fit; friends/family/fools; angel and equity investment; and bootstrapping.