News

CEI Receives Positive Independent Rating from Aeris

Brunswick, Maine, August 14, 2018—Coastal Enterprises, Inc. (CEI) announced today that it has received strong ratings for its fund management from Aeris, the independent rating and information service for community investment funds. CEI received a four-star impact management rating with Policy Plus and AA- financial strength and performance rating. Aeris provides comprehensive assessments of a community investment fund’s financial strength, performance and impact management.

“Our four-star, policy plus, AA- Aeris rating confirms that CEI is a high quality channel for mission-driven investing that makes a difference in communities,” said Betsy Biemann, CEI’s CEO. “As a fund manager, we target our investments to balance risk, return, and liquidity while growing good jobs, environmentally sustainable enterprises, and more broadly shared prosperity.”

A wide range of investors—including banks, foundations, fund managers, and others—rely on Aeris ratings to identify and evaluate community investment opportunities that meet their impact goals and risk parameters. Aeris has issued more than 600 ratings opinions since 2004.

The rigorous Aeris rating process is a demonstration of a fund’s commitment to transparency and accountability, with regard to its financial performance and impact in the community. The rating encompasses two main components: (1) an Impact Management Rating, which measures the commitment of the fund’s management to achieving impact; (2) a Financial Strength and Performance Rating, which assesses overall creditworthiness.

Rating Definitions

Four-star: clear alignment of mission, strategies, activities, and data that guide programs and planning, and effective use of resources to benefit people and communities with low incomes and achieve positive impacts related to its mission.

Policy plus: leadership role in initiatives to change government policy to benefit the community development finance industry or disadvantaged people and communities.

AA-: very strong financial strength, performance and risk management practices relative to its size, complexity, and risk profile.

More information is available at: http://www.aerisinsight.com/who/about-aeris-ratings/.

As an Aeris-rated institution, CEI is also included in the Aeris Cloud, the only source of real-time financial and impact performance data on community investment funds. The Aeris Cloud was created to give investors access to Wall Street-quality data on community investment funds such as CEI.

About CEI

Coastal Enterprises, Inc. (CEI) helps to grow good jobs, environmentally sustainable enterprises, and shared prosperity in Maine and in rural regions across the country by integrating financing, business and industry expertise, and policy solutions. CEI envisions a world in which communities are economically and environmentally healthy, enabling all people, especially those with low incomes, to reach their full potential. More at www.ceimaine.org.

About Aeris

Aeris guides capital to good. Since 2004, the nation’s leading community investors have used Aeris’ data and ratings to support their community investing. Aeris’ clients range from large financial institutions with Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) obligations, mission-driven charitable foundations, government, private wealth managers, and more. Its proprietary ratings help investors evaluate opportunities that meet their impact goals and risk parameters. Learn more at www.aerisinsight.com.

 

The Lyme Timber Company LP Closes $20 Million of New Markets Tax Credit Capacity from CCML to Sustainably Steward West Virginia Forestland

Financing supports timberland purchase; introduction of new safe-logging technology

August 6, 2018 – An investment fund managed by The Lyme Timber Company LP (“Lyme”), a private timberland investment manager, has received $20 million in New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) financing from CEI Capital Management LLC (“CCML”) to help it acquire 118,300 acres of timberlands in the Wyoming, McDowell, Mingo and Logan Counties of West Virginia.

This addition to Lyme’s portfolio is in keeping with the company’s approach to partnering with rural communities and landowners to sustainably manage working forestland with living wages paid to employees, and strategies including recreational leasing, the sale of carbon-offset credits, and restrictions on future commercial or residential development through the sale of working forest conservation easements.

Lyme’s West Virginia forestland purchase qualified for the NMTC program, which was designed by Congress to stimulate private investment and economic growth in low income communities that lack access to capital needed to grow businesses, create jobs, and sustain healthy local economies. The tracts are located in a highly economically distressed area of coal country that cites poverty rates as high as 37.9 percent, and unemployment as high as 14.8 percent.

Importantly, Lyme will work to introduce new worker safety and job quality standards to the local logging industry. Due to its steep and mountainous terrain, West Virginia woodlands are particularly difficult to safely harvest, with loggers using chainsaws on steep slopes, making them susceptible to injury when trees fall or are moved. To address these safety issues, Lyme will focus on bringing “winch-assist” harvesting technology to the region. The technology allows logging crews to operate harvesting machines on slopes that were previously logged by hand.  Harvesting machines are tethered by cables to an anchor machine at the top of the slope supporting the harvesting machine to remain upright on the hill and protects workers by moving them inside a safety cab.  Harvesting with machines also increases productivity and can create higher paying jobs with better benefits.

Though used in Canada, New Zealand, and the Pacific Northwest, tethered harvesting systems has yet to be used in the eastern US. The flexible financing from CCML via the New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) program helps make the cost of testing its implementation possible.

With the new ownership and the skills needed to operate this new technology, this project will preserve two dozen current contracting jobs, create five new direct jobs and 18.5 new contractor jobs. All direct Lyme employees will receive pay substantially above the living wage for the area and include health, life and disability insurance and an employer-matched 401(k) retirement plan.

“This transaction squares with our mission to provide good jobs, grow environmentally sustainable enterprises and seed shared prosperity in rural places,” said CEI Capital Management CEO Charlie Spies. “We are glad to partner with Lyme to help diversify West Virginia’s coal economy with a next generation model of sustainable forestry and develop a skilled workforce.”

Also participating in the transaction, Capital One, N.A. provided the NMTC equity, while a Lyme affiliate provided the debt financing for the transaction.

About CEI Capital Management

CEI Capital Management creates and preserves jobs and improves quality of life in rural, low income communities by providing access to project capital through New Markets Tax Credits. Over 12 years CEI Capital Management has placed nearly $1 billion in 95 different projects across the U.S. In addition to fiscal soundness, CEI Capital Management evaluates each project according to its benefit to the local community, economic gain and positive impact on the environment. It is a wholly owned subsidiary of CEI, the Maine-based nonprofit community development financial institution which was among the founders of this important federal economic development program. For more information, visit us online at www.ceicapitalmgmt.com.

About The Lyme Timber Company LP

The Lyme Timber Company LP is a private timberland investment manager that focuses on the acquisition and sustainable management of lands with unique conservation values. Since its founding in 1976, the Company has follow a disciplined and value-oriented approach to investing in forestland and rural real estate in the US and Canada.  www.lymetimber.com

Meet our Summer 2018 Interns!

Anna Barnes, Bowdoin College (2020)

“I am working with Keith Bisson, President of CEI, on an assessment of CEI’s internal environmental impact. I’m researching best practices and creating a baseline of CEI’s environmental footprint, looking at metrics such as greenhouse gas emissions, water use and waste production. I will also be developing a tracking tool that allows CEI to visualize its environmental impact, set goals for improvement and benchmark its future performance against the base year. This work will help CEI reaffirm its commitment to promoting a green economy and set an example by documenting its status as an environmentally responsible organization.”

 

Hilary Gove, Maine Law (2019)

“I am working with Carla Dickstein, Senior Vice President of  Research and Policy Development for the summer. I am researching barriers to employment for key demographics in the state. With Maine’s aging population, making sure every Mainer has an opportunity to find meaningful work is important for Maine’s future. I am excited to learn more about labor force participation and from CEI’s dedicated staff.”

 

 

 

Ben McLaughlin, UMaine Orono (2019)

“I am working as a finance and accounting intern under our treasurer, Ellen Rodgers. My first major project has been to organize our notes payable information into a comprehensive database that will ultimately be much more user friendly. I have made a lot of progress this first month and have learned a lot about CEI’s operations through analyzing these legal contracts. CEI is a great place to work and I can’t wait to see what the rest of the summer has in store!”

 

Jacob Small, Boston College, Carroll School of Management (2020)

“This summer, I am working with Laura Buxbaum, SVP of Public Policy and Resource Development, to study employer-based financial wellness programs in the State of Maine. I’ve been researching practices both within the state and nationally, and I will be interviewing a variety of companies in Maine to develop a report for CEI. I have learned a lot about CEI’s role of bringing together shared prosperity and quality jobs and look forward to building upon that for the rest of this summer!”

CEI Welcomes 4 New Board Members

June 25, 2018 – Coastal Enterprises, Inc. (CEI), which helps to grow good jobs, environmentally sustainable enterprises, and shared prosperity in Maine and rural regions across the country, announced that Catherine Godschalk, Beth Mattingly, Justin Maxson, and Stewart Smith have been named to its board of directors. In addition, Christa Velasquez has been elected to serve as chair, and Susan Hammond has been elected to serve as vice chair of the board of directors. Erin Cooperrider, who has served as Chair for the past year, is stepping down from the Board. Erin joined CEI’s board in 2010.

Catherine Godschalk manages Bethesda, MD-based Calvert Impact Capital’s investments team and the more than $375 million global portfolio of impact investments aimed at building, scaling, and strengthening intermediaries and structured funds tackling social and/or environmental challenges. She has spent 25 years working at the intersection of private capital and social impact, with program and product development, policy, and financing roles across a variety of institutions, including S. H. Cowell Foundation, the White House Office of Management and Budget, Fannie Mae Corporation, and Self-Help Ventures Fund. She serves on the loan committees for ROC USA Capital and Appalachian Community Capital, and she is a member of the Conservation Finance Network’s Advisory Board.  She has a master’s degree in public policy from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government and received her BA from Columbia University.

Susan Hammond is a Penobscot Nation tribal member, and the long-standing executive director of Four Directions Development Corporation (FDDC), a Native-governed Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) in Orono, ME, serving the four tribes of Maine. As one of the founders, Susan has been involved with FDDC since the earliest planning stages which began in the fall of 2000. Susan graduated from the University of Maine at Orono with a BS in Business Administration. Prior to Four Directions, she worked for the Penobscot tribe for ten years in various positions including the financial manager for the Health Department and the director of the Tribal Housing Authority. She served on the Penobscot Nation Tribal Council from 1996 to 2004. In 2003, Susan was awarded the Maine SBA Minority Small Business Advocate of the Year Award. She is the first-ever recipient of the Visionary Leader Award from the Opportunity Finance Network/Oweesta Corporation in 2006 and in 2010 received the Circle of Honor Award from the Opportunity Finance Network/Oweesta Corporation. Susan joined the CEI board in 2015.

Beth Mattingly is director of research on vulnerable families at the Carsey School of Public Policy at the University of New Hampshire. She manages all of Carsey’s policy work relating to family well-being. Her work at Carsey examines child poverty and how different family policies affect rural, suburban, and urban families and how growing up in poverty influences life outcomes. Beth has published in several academic journals, including Social Forces and Journal of Marriage and Family, and in edited volumes. Her work has been featured in Time magazine, Real Simple magazine, USA Today, and other media outlets. In addition, she has appeared on National Public Radio, New Hampshire Public Radio, and other media outlets to discuss her research. Beth completed a postdoctoral research fellowship at the Family Research Lab at the University of New Hampshire and received her master’s and doctorate degrees in sociology from the University of Maryland. She has an undergraduate degree in geography from Dartmouth College.

Justin Maxson manages the overall operations of the Mary Reynolds Babcock Foundation (MRBF) in Winston-Salem, NC and leads staff in developing strategy and initiatives to accomplish its mission and makes recommendations to the board of directors. Before joining MRBF, Justin served for 13 years as President of the Mountain Association for Community Economic Development (MACED), a multi-strategy community economic development organization based in Berea, Kentucky. Justin has been a year-long fellow at the Sustainability Institute and the Rockwood Leadership Institute. He served at the Kentucky Governor’s request on the Kentucky Climate Action Planning Committee and the planning committee for Shaping Our Appalachian Region, a regional development planning process. He has a master’s degree from Boston University and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Kentucky, both in anthropology.

Stewart Smith is Professor Emeritus of Sustainable Agriculture Policy at the University of Maine, where his teaching and research focused on sustainable agriculture and sustainable development. In addition to teaching, his career has ranged from farming to government work to owning his own business. Stewart worked in the Carter administration as Associate Administrator of the Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Service at USDA (now the Farm Service Agency). He later returned to Maine as Commissioner of Agriculture in 1979 in the Brennan administration, where he developed the foundation for an alternative farming system which is now recognized as local agriculture. In addition to his own work, he has served on numerous boards including the Maine Sustainable Agricultural Society, Maine Agricultural Loan Fund Advisory Committee, Farms for the Future Advisory Council, the Consortium for Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education, The Land Institute’s Sunshine Farm Advisory Committee, and Wolfes Neck Farm Foundation Board. In 2006, he and his wife, Sarah Redfield, started Lakeside Family Farm in Newport, producing and distributing mixed vegetables to wholesale markets in Maine. Stewart has a PhD in agricultural economics from the University of Connecticut, and a bachelor’s degree in economics from Yale University.

Christa Velasquez is a recognized leader in the impact investing field. Currently an independent consultant in Chicago, she advises foundations on impact investing strategies and program design, product development and transactions. In addition to her independent work, Christa is a senior advisor at The Giving Practice, the consulting arm of Philanthropy Northwest. She also lectures at the University of Chicago on the business of nonprofits and the evolving social sector. Christa was director of social investments for nine years at the Annie E. Casey Foundation where she created and managed its $125 million social investment fund. She was also a senior fellow at the Initiative for Responsible Investment at the Hauser Center for Nonprofit Organizations at Harvard University. Christa holds a BA in Latin American Studies from the University of Chicago and an MBA from the Yale School of Management. Christa joined CEI’s board in 2013.

CEI Welcomes New Team Members

CYNTHIA MURPHY – Senior Program Director, Workforce Solutions

Cynthia leads workforce solutions strategy and program delivery at CEI, helping employers create a people strategy that delivers competitive advantage and expanding opportunities for marginalized job seekers. She identifies opportunities to advocate for public policies that encourage quality jobs and amplify the public narrative about how quality jobs strengthen families, businesses and communities. Prior to joining CEI, Cynthia had a 25+ year career in the for-profit sector leading commercial operations for subsidiaries of Thomson Reuters, a global information business. She holds a BA from the University of Maine, an MS from Simmons College and a certificate in nonprofit management from Georgetown University. She volunteers as a certified SCORE mentor and a Top Gun Mentor.

SHERRY VACHON – Loan Services Administrator

Prior to joining CEI, Sherry worked for 10 years in mortgage servicing and adjustable rate mortgages, and in the accounting department at TD Bank. Prior to working in banking, she worked in the insurance industry for 12 years. Sherry has an Associate’s Degree in Accounting from Kaplan University.

 

ALLISON WATSON – Business Advisor, Waterville Office

Allison is a business advisor at CEI, providing one-on-one counseling and support to start-ups and existing businesses in northern Kennebec and Somerset counties. She comes to CEI with a depth and breadth of experience in economic development, education, energy and health care.  She spent several years in the energy industry working with industrial and commercial businesses,teaching business and technology courses. Most recently she was CFO and Senior Director of Operations at a healthcare non-profit. Allison earned her B.S. in Business Administration from Thomas College in Waterville, Maine, and continued at Thomas to earn both a Master’s in Computer Technology in Education and an MBA.

CEI Solar Subsidiary Receives $1.5 million Preferred Equity Investment from the 2018 NEXT Fund for Innovation Sponsored by Wells Fargo

CEI also recipient of $1.75 million in grant and loan capital from Wells Fargo to empower diverse small business owners

(BRUNSWICK– May 23, 2018) – Coastal Enterprises Inc. (CEI), which helps to grow good jobs, environmentally sustainable enterprises, and shared prosperity in Maine and in rural regions across the country, is the recipient of a NEXT Fund for Innovation (NEXT Fund) award.

The NEXT Fund, which is funded by Wells Fargo and others, and managed by the Opportunity Finance Network, supports business models that drive transformational change in the community development financial institution (CDFI) industry. The $1.5 million preferred equity investment in the newly formed solar energy financing subsidiary will focus on providing capital to mid-sized commercial solar power projects that have a positive impact on low-income people and communities.

CEI also received $1.5 million in lending capital and $250,000 in grant funds from Wells Fargo to provide diverse small business owners in Maine with access to capital and business advice. Wells Fargo’s funds will help CEI provide existing business advising and expand lending services statewide for New American and women-owned businesses.

One women-owned business that CEI worked with, Dog Not Gone in Skowhegan, has grown to become a national brand producing a variety of insect-repellant and high-visibility clothes for dogs and people. Started in her home, business owner Julie Swain has expanded the company into an apparel enterprise with products sold nationwide at retailers including LLBean, Wal Mart, and Tractor Supply Co. With business advising and a loan from CEI, Swain purchased an old textile mill in downtown Skowhegan to meet the increased production demand, which now includes insect repelling clothes for kids, United States and Maine flags, and a growing e-commerce website.

Another business, Mariama’s Beauty Supply in Portland, was founded by Mariama Jallow, a New American from The Gambia who came to CEI’s Start Smart business advisor with the idea of starting a hair braiding business in a community where no such service existed. Jallow quickly learned about taxes, paperwork, insurance and other business startup considerations from her CEI advisor. The retail store now employs two hair braiders and Jallow proud that her company offers these skilled immigrants an opportunity to obtain meaningful employment. Today, the store remains the only space in the Portland area solely dedicated to African hair sales.

“CEI helps entrepreneurs of all backgrounds and experience levels start and grow businesses, create good jobs, and earn livelihoods for themselves and their families,” said Betsy Biemann, CEI’s chief executive officer. “Access to capital, combined with one-on-one consulting, can be a game changer for people in rural regions who have a vision for a product or service that can add value to local economies. The combination of loan capital and grant funding from Wells Fargo is helping us to expand our small business financing and advising specifically for women and people from a diversity of backgrounds.”

“Small businesses thrive when they receive critical support like technical assistance, marketing and increased access to capital,” said Megan Teare, senior vice president and manager for CDFI investing at Wells Fargo. “Over the past 40 years, CEI has provided in-depth support to thousands of diverse-owned small businesses and Wells Fargo is proud to support this important work.”

About CEI
Coastal Enterprises, Inc. (CEI) helps to grow good jobs, environmentally sustainable enterprises, and shared prosperity in Maine and in rural regions across the country by integrating financing, business and industry expertise, and policy solutions. CEI envisions a world in which communities are economically and environmentally healthy, enabling all people, especially those with low incomes, to reach their full potential. More at www.ceimaine.org.

About Wells Fargo
Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) is a diversified, community-based financial services company with $1.9 trillion in assets. Wells Fargo’s vision is to satisfy our customers’ financial needs and help them succeed financially. Founded in 1852 and headquartered in San Francisco, Wells Fargo provides banking, investments, mortgage, and consumer and commercial finance through 8,200 locations, 13,000 ATMs, the internet (wellsfargo.com) and mobile banking, and has offices in 42 countries and territories to support customers who conduct business in the global economy. With approximately 265,000 team members, Wells Fargo serves one in three households in the United States. Wells Fargo & Company was ranked No. 25 on Fortune’s 2017 rankings of America’s largest corporations. News, insights and perspectives from Wells Fargo are also available at Wells Fargo Stories.

From Basement-Based Business to Main Street Enterprise: Wicked Fast Microloans from CEI Help Small Business Owners Navigate Growth and Expansion

(Brunswick, Maine – May 21, 2018) Hardworking Mainers who need catalytic capital to scale up small business operations have a new option, Wicked Fast Microloans from Coastal Enterprises, Inc. (CEI).

This expedited microloan product, designed for existing and start-up business owners, allows eligible applicants to borrow up to $25,000. The funds can be used for a variety of purposes including working capital, equipment purchases, or to refinance existing higher cost debt. (This loan product is not available for real estate purchases.)

The approval timeline is extremely fast–wicked fast, in fact. The decision on whether to lend is made by CEI within three business days; loans can close within ten business days from application. The paperwork is also minimal: just a 2-page application. Factors that CEI considers for loan approvals include credit scores and proof of working with a business advisor.

“There are a variety of situations where an entrepreneur needs capital for that one thing at just the right time that will take their business to the next level. The efficiency and quick decision-making with the Wicked Fast Loan are great pluses for clients,” said CEI’s John Scribner who heads up CEI’s StartSmart program that works with immigrant small business owners. “One of our borrowers, Adrian Espinoza, is opening a catering business, Empanada Club, at Fork Food Lab. He needed capital quickly to take advantage of the summer festival season. \This loan allowed him to have the working capital he needed to open and get his business off the ground, and not miss the busy summer season in Maine.”

There have been five Wicked Fast Microloan borrowers since CEI launched the product last month, each with a different situation that required fast financing. Other scenarios that might warrant a quick loan could be equipment breakdowns and replacement or staffing up and purchasing more material to fill a large order.

Click here for more information on the Wicked Fast Microloan or to apply today.

 About CEI

Coastal Enterprises, Inc. (CEI) helps to grow good jobs, environmentally sustainable enterprises, and shared prosperity in Maine and in rural regions across the country by integrating financing, business and industry expertise, and policy solutions. CEI envisions a world in which communities are economically and environmentally healthy, enabling all people, especially those with low incomes, to reach their full potential. More at www.ceimaine.org.

Analysis on Massachusetts South Coast/New Bedford Aquaculture Released

Study Examines Barriers and Opportunities in the Region

NEW BEDFORD, MA: A Sector Analysis for Opportunities for Aquaculture on the Massachusetts South Coast was released today, providing a regional overview of aquaculture operations in the towns of Dartmouth, Fairhaven, Marion, Mattapoisett, Wareham, Westport and the City of New Bedford.

Authored by sector experts from Coastal Enterprises Inc. (CEI), the report explores the aquaculture industry along the South Coast with a focus upon its economic potential and some of the challenges facing aquaculturists today.  The analysis contains an overview of current operations as well as recommendations identifying resources, developmental strategies, and investment needs. Over fifty regional shareholders – including town harbormasters, oyster growers, municipal and state employees, non-profit entities, financiers and economic development professionals – lent their expertise to the development of the study. Funding for the study was provided by The Garfield Foundation and Santander Bank.

Aquaculture on the South Coast is currently predominately made up of oyster growers working on small farms. Relative to other established oyster-producing areas in the state, such as Duxbury and Wellfleet, the South Coast farms are smaller-scale and most are relatively new to the business. Farmers have faced their share of challenges – from “Not in My Back Yard” pushback from homeowners and recreational boaters to lengthy and complex site permitting processes – but interest remains strong and slowly an industry is growing. In 2016 the South Coast region produced about 2.2 million oysters and currently utilizes over 160 acres for farming.

The report identifies the proposed Aquaculture Development in New Bedford as presenting the greatest potential opportunity for growth in the immediate future. Under Mayor Jon Mitchell’s initiative, the New Bedford Port Authority (NBPA) released a Request for Information (RFI) earlier this year to gauge interest about opening areas of the Port to aquaculture.  Feedback to the RFI was positive enough that the NBPA is optimistic in advancing the process to the next stages. With a proposed allotment of almost 8,400 acres, the Port of New Bedford presents the biggest opportunity for commercial scale aquaculture growth in the region, with the potential to attract larger-scale, multiple worker farms to the area.

“Successful cities are entrepreneurial cities, and successful entrepreneurship often builds on ideas that existed in plain sight.  As America’s top fishing port, it only makes sense for us to explore how we might take advantage of our opportunities in the rapidly growing aquaculture industry,” said New Bedford Mayor Jon Mitchell. “Our coastal waters can support a variety of aquaculture without compromising commercial fishing or recreational boating, and our port is the best place anywhere to process seafood of all types.  I believe we should pursue this opportunity to expand our economy and create new jobs for our residents to its fullest.”

The report also contains summaries of surrounding towns from Westport to Wareham, with a list of resources covering aquaculture education and training, equipment, access to capital (loans and grants), hatcheries, and municipal, regional, state and federal resources available as well as recommendations on potential aquaculture growth strategies in the region. “Our intent was to investigate opportunities and provide a resource for current or potential growers in the region. A foundation of opportunity has been outlined”, said Hugh Cowperthwaite, co-author and Director of the Fisheries Program at CEI.

The Garfield Foundation, a private grantmaking foundation that supports innovative collaborative models for social and environmental change, funded this analysis. Santander Bank (with a local branch in New Bedford) also provided funding support to commission the study.

Click here to download the analysis.

Junora, LTD Raises Minority Stake from CEI Ventures

April 30, 2018 – Biddeford, Maine —   Junora Ltd., a startup company providing advanced metallurgical products for the global vacuum coating industry today announced it has closed on a $500,000 minority investment from CEI Ventures, Inc. (CVI).

Junora is in the design and build phase of making its own unique manufacturing equipment. In parallel the company is developing a specialized energy source needed for the manufacturing process. The CVI equity investment will help accelerate Junora’s efforts this year bringing new technology and solutions in rotary sputtering, a process used by the vacuum coating industry.

Junora founder Dean Plaisted has three decades of experience working in the field. He previously worked with CVI and its parent company CEI while CEO of another enterprise. The CVI and Junora teams are excited to be working together again.

“We look forward to another fruitful and rewarding relationship! Dean is the kind of socially minded serial entrepreneur we love to partner with,” said Nat Henshaw President of CEI Ventures.

Junora currently employs 12 and expects to grow dramatically over the next several years. Henshaw noted that Plaisted has a strong track record of creating good jobs through establishing apprenticeships, career ladders and strong benefits in the machining/fabrication profession. That has led Junora to also engage CEI’s Workforce Solutions group to help with training and recruitment for staffing skilled positions.

“I am delighted to be back in the thin films industry working with old friends CEI and CEI Ventures,” Plaisted said. “We are ambitious and optimistic for this new venture. Equity capital is critical to a fast-growing business.”

Junora is headquartered in Biddeford, Maine, once a leading center of American manufacturing. The company’s presence in the city will help in the strengthening of the local economy.

About Junora

Junora is entering the global market for the supply of rotary sputtering targets that will be used by its customers to produce products such as Low-E Glass, Displays, PV Solar Panels and Solid State Thine Film Lithium Batteries.  Junora plans to grow globally but is committed to keeping its headquarters and a sizable manufacturing operation in Maine. It has already established a satellite site with 2 employees in Arizona.