Autumn 2023 ALEDA Updates

Loan Client Spotlight: Albert Lea Tree Service Thrives with ALEDA’s Support!

At ALEDA, our mission is to foster growth, create opportunities, and drive economic development in Freeborn County. One of the most fulfilling aspects of our work is witnessing local businesses flourish and contribute to our thriving community. Today, we’re excited to shine a spotlight on Albert Lea Tree Service and its dedicated owner, Matt Brand.

Meet Matt Brand: Passionate Arborist and Entrepreneur

With over a decade of experience in the tree removal industry and a certification as an arborist, Matt Brand is an expert in all things trees. He’s not just passionate about arboriculture; he’s also deeply committed to the well-being of Albert Lea and Freeborn County.

A Vision of Growth: Battling the Emerald Ash Borer Threat

The spread of the Emerald Ash Borer to Freeborn County raised concerns, but Matt saw an opportunity to make a difference. Recognizing the need to remove infected Ash Trees that could not be saved, he embarked on a mission to expand his business and provide vital services to our community.

ALEDA Steps In: Supporting Business Growth

With a vision to grow his business and address the Ash Borer threat, Matt sought a loan to invest in new equipment. That’s when ALEDA stepped in, utilizing our revolving loan funds to support Matt’s vision. Together with Arcadian Bank and Freeborn Mower Electric Cooperative, we made it happen.

A Blossoming Outcome: A Growing Workforce

The results? Albert Lea Tree Service not only secured the equipment needed to tackle the Ash Borer challenge but also expanded its workforce, creating three new jobs in our community. This is precisely what we stand for at ALEDA – growing businesses, creating jobs, and nurturing our local economy.

Current Project Highlights: Driving Freeborn County Forward

At ALEDA, we’re not just about one success story; we’re committed to transforming the entire landscape of Albert Lea and Freeborn County. Here are some of the exciting projects and initiatives that are shaping our community’s future:

  1. Buildings and Loans: Our portfolio of five buildings houses seven thriving tenants, while we’ve lent over $900,000 in low-interest loans to 15 local businesses.
  2. Programs That Make a Difference: Our Community Investment Fund is empowering local investors to contribute to community growth and redeveloping areas like the 300 Block of South Broadway to provide housing and commercial spaces.
  3. Freeborn County Scholarship: Partnering with Riverland Community College, we’re making education accessible to high school students in Freeborn County, with scholarships to bridge the gap.
  4. Annual Entrepreneurial Bridge Event: We recently hosted over 130 attendees and entrepreneurs for an inspiring event in partnership with the Southern Minnesota Initiative Foundation.
  5. Housing: Housing projects like Unique Opportunities’ Phase II and III, Marketplace Apartments, and more are providing much-needed housing options.
  6. Further Investment in ALEDA Spec Building: Design Ready Controls’ success in the South Industrial Park is driving expansion and the need for additional parking.
  7. Other Exciting Ventures: From downtown redevelopment projects to attracting new businesses, restaurants, and grocers, we’re involved in numerous initiatives that will make Freeborn County even better.

Our journey to a brighter future is ongoing, and we’re thrilled to be part of this transformative process. Stay tuned for more stories of growth, opportunity, and community development.

Together, we are shaping the future of Albert Lea and Freeborn County. Let’s continue to thrive and grow as one strong community! 🌳🌟

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