TN RURAL OPPORTUNITY FUND
Formed in partnership with the State of Tennessee and Member Banks of the Tennessee Bankers Association, this perpetual revolving loan fund provides capital to small, disadvantaged, and early stage businesses located in Tennessee’s 92 rural counties (excludes Davidson, Knox, and Shelby Counties).
Local Family Keeps Doors Open for Largest Private Employer In Hancock County
Last year, David Greene Jr. and his family were ready to purchase Kiefer Manufacturing, a horse trailer factory that had been at the heart of their community for years. By buying the business, they’d be keeping the doors open for Hancock County’s largest private employer. The family’s plans were halted when environmental testing revealed possible issues on the collateral property, and their guaranteed loan fell through.
“At that point, we were suffering,” says David. “We couldn’t get material in here and things looked pretty bad until Pathway stepped in.” A contact at the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development (TNECD) put the Greene family in touch with Pathway Lending, and within a month they had their working capital and were back to building trailers.
“This is a distressed county – one of the poorest in the nation,” says Greene. “We’ve got 40 skilled employees, and we’re glad to be able to take care of them.”
Kiefer is constantly looking for ways to make every trailer sturdier and to expand the skill set of their employees. “Every couple weeks we come up with a new improvement,” says David. “And everyone who comes on-board, no matter what department, has to work in the factory so they learn these trailers inside and out.” David’s goal for Kiefer is to grow, and to continue making the best possible product in the community and industry he loves.
David’s goal for Kiefer is to grow, and to continue making the best possible product in the community and industry he loves.