News

Vote Yes on 3!

From Maine’s renewed downtowns to its working waterfronts to its rural commercial centers, business leaders across the state who champion small business growth and job creation are lending their support to ballot Question 3. Read more!

Fueling the Economy

Our latest newsletter profiles CEI client Interphase Energy, who is expanding the market for renewables with affordable, fossil fuel-free heating options. Click here to find out more! In the following video, Steve Cole, CEI’s Energy and Environment Officer, explains renewable energy fits into our $128 million Platform for Sustainable Lending and Investing, with borrower Interphase Energy as an example of a Maine-based startup whose goal is to make energy more affordable for all.

Leading Equity Fund Invests in Maine Communities

CEI announced today that Parnassus Investments, an investment management company and a leader in the field of responsible investing, has made a $1 million investment in CEI Investment Notes, Inc. (CEI Notes) via its Parnassus Core Equity Fund. Read more!

Meet Our 2014 Summer Interns!

022“A lot of people ask me why I am studying environmental and resource economics instead of just economics—and the answer is that I want to utilize both skills by focusing on environmental issues in a business setting, a subject I don’t think receives enough attention. CEI’s commitment to creating economically and environmentally healthy communities has introduced me to deserving companies, businesses, and individuals who are implementing countless plans, proposals, and unique tactics to work towards expansion. Although many people think the fishing industry is struggling, I have observed CEI creatively work to position it for success, all while remaining socially responsible in their practices.”

-Jessica Kaczynski, Environmental and Resource Economics, Spanish, & Business Administration Major at the University of New Hampshire; CEI 2014 Internship Placement: Sustainable Fisheries and Aquaculture Program

 

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“It’s difficult to explain ‘socially responsible venture capital’ to my friends. A lot of kids at Columbia intern at big banks, where they feel like there’s no soul and it’s all profit driven, while others intern at non-profits where they feel pretty ineffective. CEI Ventures is mission-driven, but seeks to generate business growth and returns on investment—the perfect balance of the two. It’s a great example of aligning incentives to promote social goals. As soon as you look at the long-term results, it’s pretty clear: we’ve been able to effectively create quality jobs for distressed communities throughout the Northeast.”

-Jameson McBride, Economics & Sustainable Development Major, Columbia University; CEI 2014 Internship Placement: CEI Ventures

026“There’s excellent work happening at CEI, but what strikes me the most, from an internal communications standpoint, is how the triple bottom line platform doesn’t just serve as a metric for investments, but truly drives employee decisions as well—from office conversations to designing CEI central in Brunswick. There are certainly countless moving parts, with multiple sectors and diverse groups involved, but the amount of collaboration between employees really speaks to shared values and purpose. The energy here turns it into one community revitalizing another, and local, sustainable industry growth is the result.”

-Elisabeth Sepulveda, Psychology, Management, Middle Eastern Studies Major, St. Olaf College, Northfield, MN; CEI 2014 Internship Placement: Marketing and Communications

IMG_3570“With a degree in Economics, I always figured I’d have to somehow sacrifice my dreams of effecting real change in the world if I wanted to build a challenging career in finance. CEI’s model of socially responsible lending, however, has taught me that that “big bank mentality” is not the only way. I am challenged every day I come into work, and at the end of that day, I get to see the impact we make here, whether it’s through job creation, affordable housing placement, environmental sustainability projects, or microenterprise lending that allows refugees the chance to start anew. I am so proud to be associated with an organization such as this, and am thankful for my time here.”

-Erin Morris, Economics Major, recent graduate from the University of Carolina at Chapel Hill; CEI 2014 Internship Placement: Lending Department

Headshot.CCML“While some Community Development Entities (CDEs) are eager to quickly push out New Market Tax Credit allocation as soon as they receive it, CEI Capital Management is committed to taking time to find the right deals. Deals that not only meet the criteria set by the program, but that go steps beyond, ensuring that projects will create sustainable businesses that have positive impacts on the surrounding community and environment. And the work doesn’t stop once the deal is closed. What sets CCML apart from other CDEs is its commitment to the borrower and the communities impacted throughout the seven years of the deal. This is only made possible by each team member’s passion for serving the underserved and furthering CCML’s mission.”

-Sandhya Nakhasi, Master’s in Business Administration, University of Michigan; CEI 2014 Internship Placement: Investment – CEI Capital Management LLC

JaredPic“My experience this summer at CEI has been amazing.  As an individual coming from out-of-state, CEI has been a great place to learn about community development within Maine.  I have been able to connect with a number of individuals working in fields from education, to healthcare, to small business development, giving me a great sense of Maine’s areas of need and growth.  Being able to take part in CEI’s work to improve Maine and create beneficial partnerships has been a rewarding experience.”

-Jared Benjamin, 2L student, University of Maine School of Law; CEI 2014 Internship Placement: CEI Policy