Northland Foundation Small Business Emergency Loan Program

Challenge: In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the State of Minnesota implemented a small business emergency loan program which offered 0% interest loans of up to $35,000 for businesses impacted by Executive Orders 20-04 and 20-08, which mandated closures to mitigate the spread of the virus.

Role: Northland Foundation was selected by DEED to administer and distribute the loans in the Arrowhead region. With a small lending staff, Northland Foundation reached out to Northspan for assistance in underwriting and evaluating loan applications and provided recommendations for approvals or denials.

Results: Northspan staff provided underwriting services and was able to approve 65 loans totaling $1.3 million to small businesses across Northeastern Minnesota in a timely manner. This provided crucial assistance to retain jobs and keep salons, fitness centers, and dining establishments operational until reopening was possible.

Reference: Michael Colclough, Director of Lending, Northland Foundation, 218-740-7305

Contact Bob Palmquist at for more information.