Zions Bank Recognized by Montana & Idaho Community Development Corporation

Through referrals, Zions helped provide Idaho businesses and projects access to nearly $40 million in capital in 2017.

Zions Bank Apr 17, 2018

Zions Bank has helped provide Idaho businesses and projects access to nearly $40 million in capital — more than any other lending institution in the state — earning it the 2017 Idaho Lending Institution of the Year Award from the Montana & Idaho Community Development Corporation.

Zions Bank did this by referring clients to the financing company’s small-business lending program or by partnering together on tax credit financing for large-scale development projects.

Among the clients supported in 2017 are a Boise-based tortilla manufacturer, a wedding and event center in Star, a regional restaurant chain and a background screening company in Boise.

In addition, Saul Hernandez, Business Banker at Zions Bank, has been awarded the organization’s 2017 Idaho Small Business Lender of the Year Award for helping connect entrepreneurs with Montana & Idaho CDC’s small-business lending program. It provides flexible, responsible capital to see borrowers through short-term growth needs and prepares them for a long-term bank loan.

The Montana & Idaho Community Development Corporation presented the 2017 Idaho Lending Institution of the Year Award to Zions Bank and 2017 Idaho Small Business Lender of the Year Award to Saul Hernandez. Pictured from left are Dave Glaser of the Montana & Idaho CDC and Jerry Gamb, Saul Hernandez and Toni Nielsen of Zions Bank.

Montana & Idaho CDC is a nonprofit financing company that provides capital to businesses and communities that need some additional help to get their projects financed. Its programs range from lending to small businesses including some “nearly bankable” businesses, many of them startups, to lending through New Markets Tax Credits, a federal program designed to incentivize investment in economically underserved areas.

With offices in Boise, Missoula and Bozeman, it recently added Wyoming, Eastern Washington and Eastern Oregon to its service area, and is expected to announce a new name in the coming weeks.

 “Small businesses are the lifeblood of our economy. They create jobs and fuel growth that makes Idaho a vibrant place to live and work,” said Zions Bank Region President Toni Nielsen. “We are proud to be recognized as the Montana & Idaho CDC’s top lending partner because we are committed to providing capital to entrepreneurs to help bring their innovations to fruition.”

“I’m honored to be recognized for this distinguished award,” said Zions Bank Business Banker Saul Hernandez. “The real honor is working with business owners and entrepreneurs each day, helping to make their dreams become reality.”

“Zions Bank has been an invaluable partner to our organization since we expanded into Idaho in 2012,” said Dave Glaser, President of Montana & Idaho CDC. “When their commercial lenders see borrowers who can benefit from special financing programs, they go the extra mile to connect them to us. And when they see catalytic development projects that will create jobs and stimulate Idaho’s economy, but have a gap in funding, they pick up the phone and call about our New Markets Tax Credit Program. We look forward to continuing to support projects that strengthen community prosperity in Idaho.”

Montana & Idaho CDC works with investors like Zions Bank to turn New Markets Tax Credits into cash, and then uses that cash to fund businesses, nonprofits and real estate developments. In 2017, the organizations partnered together on tax credit financing to help Boise-based Fresca Mexican Foods build a new $37 million manufacturing facility at Caldwell’s new Sky Ranch Business Park. The project helped create jobs and catalyze additional development in the area.

In 2017, Montana & Idaho CDC provided loans to almost 100 nearly bankable businesses, with just over half of that amount going to startups, which are often challenged to get bank financing.  Among the many small businesses that Zions Bank referred to Montana & Idaho CDC in 2017 are:

  • High Desert Station, a community event venue and equestrian complex in Star, Idaho.
  • Core Screening, an online background check and drug screening service in Boise.
  • Al’s Car Care, an automotive repair shop in Boise.
  • Boise Fry Company, a fry-focused fast-casual restaurant with franchises in Idaho and Oregon.
  • Domino’s Pizza, a franchise with locations in Kuna and Meridian, Idaho, and Ontario, Oregon.

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