Drysdale named to ‘grow bonds’ board Ontarians have invested $12.9 million

Fort Frances town councillor Tannis Drysdale is among the appointees to the Northern Ontario Grow Bonds board of directors, a body struck up to approve loans to applicants under the program.
“There will be a flurry of activity in a very short time,” said Coun. Drysdale, noting the board will meet for the first time next week.
As the deadline for applications was today, the board should have a much better picture of how much money can be divvied up between how many applicants at that time.
“We want to get the money out to the entrepreneurs as soon as possible,” said Coun. Drysdale.
Other board members announced so far include Geoff McClain, Bonnie Foster, Richard Mannisto, James Davey, Donald Black, and Suzanne Herbert.
The province announced yesterday afternoon that, at last count, grow bond sales raised almost $13 million in four weeks—the proceeds of which will go to loans for new and expanding businesses in the North.
“We are delighted by the response of Northern investors to this unique investment opportunity,” said Finance Minister Greg Sorbara in a press release.
“By purchasing Northern Ontario Grow Bonds, Northerners not only made a secure, competitive investment, they’ve also invested in the future prosperity of their great region,” he added.
Spawned by northerners, the grow bonds concept was implemented by the Ontario government to stimulate job growth, community development and business opportunities in Northern Ontario.
There are two components to the campaign: a five-year bond with a four-percent fixed rate that was available exclusively to northern investors and a business loan program for northern small and medium-sized businesses that wrapped up today.
“We are thrilled with the leadership of northern communities and individuals who demonstrated faith in northern business through the purchase of grow bonds,” said Northern Development and Mines Minister Rick Bartolucci.
“We are particularly impressed because grow bonds is a pilot project, with its success resting largely on the confidence of northerners. Because of their participation, there is now close to $13 million available to grow our local businesses and the Northern Ontario economy,” he added.
The Grow Bond Business Loan program is available for eligible businesses to increase permanent, full-time employment in the north. Loans provided will be between $125,000 and $1 million.
Businesses had until today to submit loan applications and help grow their business and the northern economy.