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DEED wins National Finance Award

Monday, November 24, 2014

By Brainerd Dispatch

The Council of Development Finance Agencies (CDFA) named the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) the winner of the 2014 CDFA Excellence in Access to Capital Finance Award.

The group cited the state's use of a wide range of innovative programs designed to promote economic development by enhancing access to capital for Minnesota businesses.

The CDFA Excellence in Development Finance Awards recognize outstanding development finance programs, agencies, leaders, projects and success stories. These awards, presented annually at the CDFA National Development Finance Summit, honor excellence in the use of financing tools for economic development and the individuals who champion these efforts.

The CDFA recognized the Job Creation Fund, which since its launch in January 2014 has awarded $15.1 million to 26 companies in Minnesota. Those companies have committed to creating nearly 1,600 new full-time jobs and plan to invest more than $314.1 million to expand.

"DEED is honored to receive this prestigious national award that recognizes our team's innovative approach to economic development," said DEED Commissioner Katie Clark Sieben. "Minnesotans and our state's economy are benefitting from the smart, pay-for-performance investments made through the Job Creation Fund that is spurring job growth throughout our state."

"CDFA is proud to honor the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development for their excellence in development finance," added Toby Rittner, president and CEO of CDFA. "Their work in the area of access to capital finance is cutting edge, innovative and an example of best practices in our industry."

Under the Minnesota Job Creation Fund program, not a single dollar is paid until the enrolled firms meet job creation and investment thresholds. This pay-for-performance approach makes the Minnesota Job Creation Fund one of the most innovative in the country, according to the CDFA.

The Job Creation Fund was first proposed by Governor Mark Dayton to encourage job growth in Minnesota and provide expansion support funding to businesses throughout the state.

The Job Creation Fund has awarded $5.9 million to 13 companies in Greater Minnesota that expect to create 461 full-time jobs and invest $86 million.

The CDFA Excellence in Development Finance Awards will be formally presented at the 2014 CDFA National Development Finance Summit in Scottsdale, Ariz., on Nov. 20.

The Council of Development Finance Agencies is a national association dedicated to the advancement of development finance concerns and interests. CDFA is composed of the nation's leading and most knowledgeable members of the development finance community representing public, private and nonprofit entities alike. For more information about CDFA, visit www.cdfa.net.

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