Three Firms Get $145,000 from Michigan Microloan Fund

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Three more Michigan companies have received a combined total of $145,000 through the Michigan Microloan Fund Program, bringing the total amount invested through the Fund to over $1.8 million.

FamilyMint, Fusion Coolant Systems and Shepherd Intelligent Systems LLC received the funding to support commercialization of their core products.

FamilyMint, based in Ann Arbor, is an online budgeting tool that helps parents guide spending and helps kids develop vital money management skills. FamilyMint builds on the natural way children learn, through observing and doing; children take the reins, allocate savings, set goals, and make transactions. 

Parents act as the bank and automate allowance, encourage savings with motivating interest rates, and reward deposits for worthwhile goals. Microloan funding awarded to FamilyMint was via the Ann Arbor-Ypsilanti SmartZoneLocal Development Financing Authority.

“The Michigan Microloan Fund Program helped FamilyMint launch the premium and co-branded versions of the application,” said Jeff Eusebio, FamilyMint co-founder and CEO. “This funding supports the company’s approach to new markets as well as invest in continued development to enhance the FamilyMint offering.”

Fusion Coolant Systems, located in Ypsilanti, makes manufacturing processes faster, cheaper and cleaner through the use of advanced coolant and lubrication systems. The company’s patented CHiP Lube system reduces costs while simultaneously improving worker health and safety and eliminating a toxic waste stream. Fusion Coolant Systems received funding through the Eastern Washtenaw Microloan Fund.

“The Michigan Microloan Fund Program has been critical in allowing Fusion Coolant Systems the breathing space to finalize product development and engage with initial customers,” said CEO Thomas Gross.

Shepherd Intelligent Systems, based in Ann Arbor, provides fleet management services through proprietary software. Real-time vehicle information, including location and time of arrival prediction, is delivered directly to passengers and fleet managers via a computer or mobile phone.  These tools are used to improve fleet operational efficiency and empower transit riders to use their time more effectively. Microloan funding awarded to Shepherd Intelligent Systems was via the Ann Arbor-Ypsilanti SmartZoneLocal Development Financing Authority.

“The microloan will provide the foundation for the company’s national sales push over the next few months,” said Shepherd Intelligent Systems’ president Adrian Fortino. “In addition to the sales and marketing funding, we also have hired an additional engineer to broaden our technical expertise. Ann Arbor SPARK has been an extraordinary supporter through our early stage growth. We are building Shepherd Intelligent Systems here in Ann Arbor and will keep the company here for the years to come.”

Since the Michigan Microloan Fund Program was established in July 2009, 45 companies have received over $1.8 million in subordinated loans.

For more information about the microloan programs, managed by Ann Arbor Spark, visit www.annarborusa.org/funding-incentives.

(c) 2010, WWJ Newsradio 950. All rights reserved.

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