MOBILE, Alabama – The Melton Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation’s second annual “Where is the Money” workshop offers more than an inside look at entrepreneurial financing.
The five-hour seminar, being offered in tandem with the Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce’s inaugural Mobile Area Small Business Week, will give local business owners access to some of the brightest minds in the industry from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday, May 13 in the 29th-floor conference room of the RSA Tower, located at 11 N. Water St. in downtown Mobile.
With information on how to acquire financing ranging from $500 to more than $5 million, the event’s speakers include the following heavy-hitters:
- John Arendall, area business development executive and senior vice president for the south Alabama/Florida panhandle area of Regions Financial Corp.
- Grover Brown, loan officer with Community Enterprise Investments Inc. CEII is a Community Development Financial Institution that has made business capital available to small and minority-owned business firms since 1982. As a Community Development Financial Institution, CEII serves Northwest Florida and Alabama providing micro business loans in amounts ranging from $2,000 up to $50,000.
- C. Bradley Cherry, a member of Maynard Cooper & Gale PC’s public finance and real estate practice groups. His public finance practice includes the representation as bond counsel in Alabama of cities, counties, boards of education, hospitals and health care organizations, nonprofit organizations, utility systems and other political subdivisions in a variety of tax-exempt transactions. His practice also includes the representation of public bodies and private entities with respect to various state and local tax incentives, public/private partnerships and economic development projects.
- Norman B. Davis Jr., managing director of TruFund’s Alabama office. TruFund is a national nonprofit organization that advances economic opportunity for people, businesses, and communities in need. It provides loan financing and services to underserved small businesses in Alabama to support the long-term stability of small businesses and foster economic recovery.
- Stephen Davis, an attorney with Maynard Cooper’s Huntsville office, whose immigration practice focuses on assisting clients with I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification compliance and audits, advising clients regarding the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program and preparing a variety of immigrant and nonimmigrant visa petitions.
- Jennifer Edwards with Alpha Capital Solutions LLC, a management consulting group that specializes in any array of business needs including advisement on startups, expansions, product development, finding strategic funding partners, and funding solutions for nonprofit and for-profit businesses.
- Lynn Krueger, business services coordinator for Mobile-Works, a primary training funding partner of the Alabama Career Center. Specifically, Mobile-Works funds a payment incentive for employers to hire eligible new workers and train them to the company’s needs. The program requires minimal paperwork, and payment is made directly to employers to train hourly or salaried workers.
- Brent McMahan, senior area manager for Mobile for the U.S. Small Business Administration. The SBA plays an important role for people who want to finance or grow their business and offers a variety of loan programs for very specific purposes.
- Bo Megginson, executive director of the Mobile-based Gulf Coast Angel Network. GCAN is one of four independent regional hubs – alongside Auburn, Huntsville and Birmingham – that comprise the statewide Angel Investor Management Group, one of the premier early-stage funding sources in the southeast. In the past year, Megginson helped GCAN become the largest – despite being the newest – of the four Alabama angel networks.
- Terri Pringle with the South Alabama Regional Planning Commission. Pringle will speak specifically about the commission’s Revolving Loan fund, a locally-controlled source of capital used to finance small business startup and expansion whose projects will create permanent jobs. By combining the Revolving Loan Fund and bank financing, the commission helps borrowers to realize an effective rate well below market rates.
- Lisa Riley, vice president of the Delta Region for Accion. Accion opened its Alabama office in January 2012, as an extension of Accion Texas Inc. – the nation’s largest nonprofit small business micro-lender, having made more than 13,000 loans totaling more than than $130 million. Since opening in Alabama, the group has lent more than $400,000 to small businesses and often works with entrepreneurs who may have difficulty accessing credit.
- Johnnie Robinson with the city of Mobile’s Community Planning and Development Department. The City of Mobile Small Steps to Success Micro Loan Fund is designed to assist new start-up entrepreneurs, micro enterprises and small businesses with start-up capital as well as funding to stabilize and expand their business. The fund targets low- to moderate-income individuals, minorities and women-owned businesses and also provides technical assistance through training classes, workshops and seminars.
- Elizabeth Sanders, president and chief executive officer of the Downtown Mobile Alliance. Established in August 2006, the nonprofit alliance was created to facilitate the work of the Downtown Mobile District Management Corp. and Main Street Mobile Inc. The membership organization exists to support the redevelopment of downtown Mobile through marketing, advocacy and the management of Business Improvement District services.
- Dominick Wallace, managing director of Wallace Capital, a private lender specializing in creative financing for real estate investors, builders and developers. The company provides quick, short-term bridge capital, and financing solutions are developed exclusively for those seeking alternatives to conventional banking loans.
- Marc Whitehead, president and chief executive officer of Mobile-based Harbor Financial Services LLC. The privately-held company operates as an independent Broker/Dealer, SEC Registered Investment Advisor and general insurance agency. Harbor Financial’s core offerings include financial reviews, individual asset management, third-party advisory platforms, 401k rollover solutions, institutional advisory and education services as well as alternative investments and a full line of insurance products.
The University of South Alabama’s Ron Eastburn; Bill Cummings, director of the Alabama Small Business Development Center; and Todd Burkhalter, chief executive officer and managing partner of Mitternight Corp. will serve as the event’s facilitators.
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