South Burlington, VT– In FY 2018, VEDA closed a record number of financings – a total of $167.8 million. This amount is 1.8x the largest previous annual volume in the Authority’s history. The amount of private capital leveraged in the projects financed was $93.3 million.
These and other FY2018 contributions to Vermont’s economy by the Authority will be presented today at VEDA’s 44th Annual Meeting in South Burlington.
“VEDA’s total volume was extraordinary this year, consisting of a mix of bond financing and direct loans,” said Jo Bradley, VEDA’s Chief Executive Officer. “VEDA experienced another big year in the issuing of tax-exempt conduit bonds -- an important financing tool for larger businesses, with VEDA serving as the conduit that allows these companies to access the tax-exempt market.” VEDA closed an additional $53.1 million in agricultural, commercial, energy and small business loans. Of this amount, agricultural projects comprised 41%, compared with 29% for commercial projects, 16% for energy projects, and 14% for small business projects.
Bradley noted the higher agricultural lending reflected the downturn in the farm economy during the last several years due to low milk prices and high input costs. This, in turn, she explained, caused the price of working assets, such as cows, machinery and equipment, to decline. In response to this challenging situation, the Vermont Agricultural Credit Corporation (VACC), VEDA’s agricultural lending subsidiary, worked with the Administration, the Department of Agriculture and the General Assembly to establish the Farm Operating Loan Program (FOLP). “The Program was designed to make Operating Loans to farmers for working capital,” Bradley said. “Many farmers used these funds to pay off seed and grain bills, and some made use of the loans for general working capital to help them remain in business. VACC continues to provide cash-flow relief to Vermont’s dairy farmers to help them withstand the negative effects of these economic pressures. On a positive note, we are seeing diversification on many farms as they expand their product offerings.”
As of June 30, 2018, VEDA had assets of $300.3 million, with a loan portfolio totaling $266.7 million. Since its inception in 1974, VEDA has approved financings totaling $2.5 billion.
VEDA’s FY 2018 Annual Report is available for viewing online at www.veda.org.
The Vermont Economic Development Authority (VEDA) is Vermont’s nonprofit economic development finance lender. Created by the Vermont General Assembly in 1974, VEDA’s mission is “to contribute to the creation and retention of quality jobs in Vermont by providing loans and other financial support to eligible and qualified Vermont industrial, commercial and agricultural enterprises.”
VEDA offers a wide range of low-cost lending options for Vermont businesses and farms of all sizes, and the Authority’s lending solutions are customized to each borrower’s individual needs. Whether in the form of direct loans, tax-exempt bond issuance or loan guarantee support, VEDA’s innovative financing programs help ensure that Vermont businesses and farms have the capital they need to grow and succeed. VEDA most often lends in conjunction with banks and other financing partners, helping to stimulate economic development activity in Vermont.
Since inception, VEDA has provided $2.5 billion in financing assistance to thousands of eligible Vermont entrepreneurs, manufacturers, small businesses, family farms, and agricultural enterprises.
VEDA has five offices throughout Vermont – in Montpelier, Burlington, Middlebury, St. Johnsbury and Brattleboro. For more information about VEDA, visit www.veda.org or call 802-828-JOBS.