What IS Community Capital?

Community Capital is literally money raised from the community for community businesses. Lisa Dawson, the Executive Director of Northeast Oregon Economic Development District, who works in one of the most rural parts of the state, eloquently describes the importance of community capital to her and to all of us Oregonians:

“Community capital depends on relationships. This kind of capital works when there is a strong sense of community including healthy relationships within the community. Those relationships provide motivation and security for individuals to enter into financial investments with one another which will strengthen the business sector within the community. Ideally, those businesses will then purchase from other local businesses, create jobs, repay investors, become part of or strengthen the social fabric of the community and invest in other businesses within the community.”

“I’m sure there is a capital gap in Oregon. Nearly daily, I encounter business owners and potential business owners who find it difficult or impossible to access loan funds. The gap is highest among start-up businesses and those with limited net worth and collateral. Business owners in these situations have often turned to credit cards for permanent working capital or equipment needs. They are using the wrong type of capital for their needs and they often get into financial trouble because the credit card terms do not match their ability to repay the debt.”

 

What do you think of the new securities crowdfunding law?

 

“It’s a brilliant solution to meeting capital needs, to making investments that matter and are consistent with our values and to engage our communities in shaping the future of Oregon. It’s a great opportunity to keep some of our money at home and help locally owned businesses grow and flourish!”

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“I want to invest in companies that serve a local market while fulfilling a local need, as well as in companies that have the potential to export their products or services outside our region. I would want to invest in a company whose owners had personal ties and commitments to their community.”

Want to learn more?

Join Lisa Dawson and other state and national experts talk about raising community and rural Oregon next week at ComCap:OR, May 4-5.

See the full conference program here, or even download it right onto your smartphone or tablet.

Reserve your ticket now with this $50 discount code!