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Colorado Lending Source | Jun. 18, 2015

1997 was the first year Colorado Lending Source operated as a 501(c)(6) non-profit, after being approved by the IRS at the end of the previous year. To uphold this designation, Colorado Lending Source was required to invest in various organizations and communities throughout the state.

Executive Director, Ron Reuss, incorporated a new outreach strategy into his business plan for 1997. By forming partnerships with like-minded organizations and sponsoring their educational seminars, lender panels, conferences and events, Colorado Lending Source was able to curb surplus capital. Some of Colorado Lending Source’s first resource partners included NADCO, the Metro Denver Chamber of Commerce, Colorado Housing & Finance Authority, CAGGL, Minority and Women Chambers’ Coalition, and the Fort Collins Manufacturer’s Conference.

Of course, providing support to 19 resource partners was costly, but business was booming in 1997. A total of 36 loans were approved through Colorado Lending Source, generating $42 million in total project costs and creating 415 new jobs. The top portfolio concentration was Manufacturing (22%), which attributed to the increase in job creation from previous years.

One of these manufacturing businesses was Advertising Concepts, who designs, fabricates, and installs custom signs and environmental graphics. Linda Gregory and Mervyn Eckman started the business in 1974, and by 1998 they had outgrown their manufacturing space. The pair found the perfect location in Fort Collins, which they purchased and remodeled with an SBA 504 loan from Colorado Lending Source. They anticipated creating 40 jobs with the new space.

Today Advertising Concepts is known as ADCON Signs. The business resides in the same location, yet their work covers the country. Their clients include Chipotle, the Town of Breckenridge, the San Francisco Zoo, Yahoo Corporate Campus, the Westminster Promenade, the South Cost Plaza, Steamboat Ski Area, and Disneyland California Adventure.