First VfG investment wins bank financing

The New Hampshire Community Loan Fund’s Vested for Growth business capital program has announced that its first borrower – Keene portable welder manufacturer Bortech — has paid off its loan early and received further financing from Bow Mills and Banks and Trust.

The Keene company was almost sold to a Seattle-based company in a distress sale until New Hampshire entrepreneur Leo White bought it. But seeking capital for the venture was not easy.

“Like many small businesses that are in a phase of growth or selling the business to an individual or the employees, Bortech was too risky to qualify for bank loans, and its projected 20 percent annual growth was not large enough to attract equity,” said John Hamilton, managing director of VfG.

With a VfG loan, Bortech was able to double its sales over three years and grew to 13 employees, expanding benefits that include profit sharing, a 401K plan, and short- and long-term disability insurance.

The $500,000 10-year loan from VfG was paid off after three years. The flexible payment schedule (tied to the company’s performance) included a provision that White institute greater employee participation in the company.

“It is particularly gratifying to see VfG’s first investment make the leap to conventional financing, while at the same time expanding so many opportunities for its employees,” said Hamilton. – BOB SANDERS

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