Northern Initiatives Prosperity. Money and Know How

Why Northern Initiatives

Providing Loans and Services to Create Jobs and Enable Communities

Northern Initiatives is a Community Development Financial Institution. We’re in business to provide loans and business services to small business owners and entrepreneurs who create jobs and enable the communities of Michigan and neighboring Wisconsin to thrive.

We have extensive experience in launching
and growing small businesses.


Resilience Personified
Cafe Rica, Battle Creek, Mich.

Brothers Jackson and Tristan Bredehoft honor
their heritage daily by serving Naranjo coffee
from Costa Rica, their mother’s home. When they
were ready to turn their online and wholesale
into their own café, Northern Initiatives helped
them open in downtown Battle Creek.

NI financed loans for equipment and working
capital, as well as modifications and deferments
during the pandemic. NI also provided coaching
as Cafe Rica came up with clever ways to keep
their customers happy, from curbside pickup to
a coffee subscription program. Their quality food
helps, too. And Café Rica is a breath of sweet
smells in downtown Battle Creek.

Jobs, Jobs, Jobs
PM Power Group, White Pine, Mich.

“Essentially what we’ll be doing is taking environmental
waste and creating pure copper cylinders for sale into
the market,” said Zach Halkola, COO of PM Power
Group of Ontonagon. A loan from Northern Initiatives
is helping create at least 35 jobs in a county with one of
the highest unemployment rates in Michigan.
Halkola is already thinking about his next round of
hiring, as the White Pine Refinery prepares to install
new boilers and tanks that will allow it to operate around
the clock. Halkola also sees opportunity in recovery and
recycling of more than copper. “What do we have that
hits the trash that shouldn’t?” Could there be a more
fitting rebirth for a coal mine?

What’s a CDFI?

Shwe Mandalay - Why Northern Initiatives

A Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) is a private financial institution that provides loans to small business owners, entrepreneurs, and community organizations that might not qualify for loans from traditional banks for a variety of reasons. Many times, lending is focused on low-income, disadvantaged, and underserved communities.

CDFIs are certified by the Community Development Financial Institution Fund (CDFI Fund) and the U.S. Department of the Treasury, which provides funds to CDFIs through a variety of programs.