Entrepreneurs Build Creative Communities at NM’s Startup Weekends

By Finance New Mexico

By Finance New Mexico

Steven Eiserling is an idea machine. Ever since he was a teenager, Eiserling has turned ideas into businesses — even during his 20-year career in information technology. Now the Chicago transplant studies business information systems at New Mexico State University and participates in entrepreneurial events. In Las Cruces’ Startup Weekend Oct. 24 to 26, he and his team pitched an application to link nonprofit organizations to volunteers through an online portal. Continue reading

Nonprofits in Need: Borrowing Can Be Tool for Financial Stability

By Cathy Sorenson, Loan Officer for The Loan Fund

By Cathy Sorenson, Loan Officer for The Loan Fund

A nonprofit isn’t in business to enrich its shareholders, but it still needs revenues and incurs operating expenses while pursuing its community service mission. It, too, can experience cash flow problems or require considerable cash to fund a capital project or expanded services.

When that happens, the nonprofit faces many of the same choices a for-profit business does, though it draws from different funding sources.

While a for-profit business can offer investors a chance to share in the company’s fortunes by buying stocks, for example, a nonprofit relies on a stakeholder who’s motivated by public interest rather than self-interest. Continue reading

Loan Helps Equine Therapist Treat Veterans With PTSD

By Justin Hyde, Accion loan officer

By Justin Hyde, Accion loan officer

When Claire Ann Barr-Johnson applied for a loan with Accion in 2013 to expand marketing for her Albuquerque-based equine therapy nonprofit, her primary goal wasn’t the money. She wanted the mentoring and advising that comes with being an Accion client.

Barr-Johnson’s for-profit company, Clinical Solutions, generated enough revenue to provide an income. But she wanted advice about how to build Horses for Healing into her central occupation — especially in light of a new, $50,000 contract with the state Behavioral Health Services Division to work with veterans who are struggling with post-traumatic stress disorder. Continue reading

Business Plans Aren’t Just for Start-Ups

J. Roy Miller, State Director, NMSBDC Network

J. Roy Miller, State Director, NMSBDC Network

Once you open your business, don’t think that you have finished with your business plan. Your business plan should be a dynamic working document, helping you stay afloat and remain focused on progress during your journey.

Business planning is a continuous cycle. Examining your position against the chart and making course corrections is part of the process. Sometimes you will find that you’ve strayed off course or are out of the bounds of your budget. In these instances you will need to take actions to bring things under control and to get back to your plan. At other times you may be forced to change it because your original concept just doesn’t square with reality, Continue reading

Manage Your Non-Profit Like a For-Profit Business

By George Kenefic, Director of Enterprise Empowerment, The Loan Fund

In my position advising non-profits that seek funding from The Loan Fund, I’ve had experience with many non-profit organizations and I currently serve on the boards of two. Regardless of their mission, they all have the same challenges as for-profit businesses – they must address everything from selling to human resources. Continue reading

Business Loans: When Traditional Banks Can’t Help

F. Leroy Pacheco

F. Leroy Pacheco, CEO, The Loan Fund

Nine years ago, while working as a housekeeper for a large Albuquerque hotel, Delia Gallegos dreamed of her own restaurant. Today she is the owner of two restaurants that provide a living wage to nine employees, and she has plans to open a third.

Delia is just one of many successful clients of The Loan Fund, a non-profit alternative lending agency that steps in when banks are unable to make a loan. The mission of The Loan Fund is to build New Mexico communities, and we pursue this mission one loan at a time.

The Loan Fund was founded in 1989 by the Council of Churches to help alleviate poverty in New Mexico. It was, and still is, a laudable goal and Continue reading