Meriwether Group Capital has been launched as a new company that will make commercial loans available to businesses that do not meet the criteria required by traditional lenders. Through its “Hero Fund”, Meriwether Group Capital will focus on small and medium-sized companies that meet the fund’s income criteria and financial needs.
The new lender will operate in partnership with Meriwether Group, a 20-year-old company in Portland, OR, which provides consulting services and has worked with companies like Voodoo Donuts, Dave’s Killer Bread, Stumptown Coffee and Alpenrose Dairy. Seattle-based First Fed Bank, a division of First Northwest Bancorp, is also partnering with the new company.
With a focus on stimulating entrepreneurship, Meriwether Group Capital will capitalize its “Hero Fund” through qualified individual and institutional investors. The company will serve a range of industries by expanding access to debt financing and help entrepreneurs realize their potential while maintaining equity and control, rather than selling a stake. The “Hero Fund” is expected to serve companies with revenues of $2-75 million that need $500,000-5 million to capitalize on business opportunities.
“Companies have three ways of financing their growth: cash flow, sale of property or debt. The best companies find the right mix of all three,” said David Howitt, Founder and CEO of Meriwether Group. “The opportunity to help businesses grow, hire more people, and build community while providing our investors with much above-market interest makes the Hero Fund an important offering.”
Jamie Shulman and Mike Ferguson, who both have over 20 years of commercial banking experience, will lead Meriwether Group Capital as owners and operators.
Shulman is a banking industry veteran with over 25 years of experience in lending, management, mentoring and strategic planning, most recently as Market President of Summit Bank in Portland, OR. In addition to Summit, Shulman has held senior positions at Northwest Bank, BBVA and US Bank.
“I’ve seen countless companies come out with a need and a strong business case to borrow from, and a clear path to satisfy debt that’s just outside of that institution’s lending mandate,” Shulman said. , who will serve as a fund manager at Meriwether Group. Capital, said. “We know there is an underserved niche with demand for the loans we offer, as well as great investor interest. In a time when entrepreneurship is more accessible than ever, we want to be able to meet to a need, to help foster small businesses and to be an economic engine for the Pacific Northwest and beyond.
Ferguson has 20 years of commercial lending and management experience in banking and private lending, most recently as Director of Loans at Lewis & Clark Bank. In previous roles with Lewis & Clark Bank, Northwest Bank and elsewhere, Ferguson developed commercial transaction flow, underwrote and structured commercial credit products and managed credit and lending operations teams.