The GFMEDC-administered Growth Initiative Fund (GIF) recently funded a $20,000 microloan to fintech (financial technology) startup, Stax, via the GIF’s Early Venture Microloan Program.
The Microloan program addresses financing challenges of early-stage primary-sector entrepreneurs in Cass County, to ideally help startups progress to their next stages of revenue and access other funding sources.
Stax is a fintech which connects companies and people who share both a similar set of values and vision.
“Starting a fintech is a capital intensive project where costs of programming, and notably, data feeds are expensive. With capital infusions, such as this microloan program, it allows us to build more of the prototype which tremendously helps us with seed investment. A prototype which is further programmed helps investors see what we’re doing not just in concept, but in reality. Also, having groups such as the GIF vet us, giving us a vote of approval helps other investors feel comfortable investing,” said David Haukaas, Stax Co-Founder .
This microloan is just one part of the myriad of programs and resources the GFMEDC helps companies like Stax connect to and utilize.
“Like with much of my typical entrepreneurial assistance, it begins by learning more about what they do, what stage they are at and what are their upcoming plans,” states John Machacek, GFMEDC’s Chief Innovation Officer.
With Stax, some initial program-specific steps included getting them both primary-sector & seed capital tax credit certified, enrolled in Innovate ND, the microloan application process and assistance in hiring area interns with support from Operation Intern. In addition to these, there have been a multitude of conversations and connections.
The stack of primary-sector programs and resources in our region, combined with our collaborative and caring entrepreneurial ecosystem, continue to be some of the many reasons why entrepreneurs are choosing to innovate and take the leap here.
The GFMEDC is here to be a catalyst to allow our primary-sector companies to maximize and expedite the rich support ecosystem in our region.
GFMEDC’s Entrepreneurial Assistance
GIF Early Venture Microloan Program
ND Department of Commerce Innovate ND