News

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.

CEI Leads Project to Introduce Commercially-Viable Scallop Farming in Maine

April 23, 2018 – Brunswick, Maine – Three custom scallop aquaculture machines built in Japan have recently been purchased by CEI as part of a multi-phase initiative to further develop scallop farming efforts in the state of Maine.

The unique, patented equipment is being utilized by Bangs Island Mussel in Portland and Pine Point Oyster in Cape Elizabeth to complete the cycle of raising, harvesting and selling cultivated scallops grown in Maine waters. The scallop grow-out period – from spat (seed) to commercially viable harvest size specimen – is estimated to be between two and three years, depending on the desired size of the final product.

“Could scallop farming be a sustainable new job-creating industry for Maine? We think so and we’re setting out to prove it,” said Hugh Cowperthwaite, Director, Fisheries Project at CEI. “We are utilizing the ‘Japanese ear-hanging technique,’ with a lens on the economics and profitability. We are tracking equipment costs, shipping and maintenance of the machinery, labor costs, scallop growth rates and selling scallops throughout the value chain.”

CEI was just awarded a 3-year grant from the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR), a nonprofit established through bipartisan congressional support in the 2014 Farm Bill, to prove the economic viability of farmed scallops. Proof of concept for both the Japanese equipment and grow out techniques would be a significant breakthrough in the American aquaculture industry, legitimizing the Atlantic Sea Scallop as a “new” commercially viable farmed species. This first in the nation project will utilize equipment that has never been used in the United States.

“The Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research is pleased to support this effort to expand economic opportunities and sustainable protein availability in the United States,” said Sally Rockey, Ph.D., executive director of FFAR. “We are optimistic about the potential for this innovative scallop farming equipment combined with market research to spur scallop industry growth, beginning in Maine.”

One of the challenges to farming scallops is that they are mobile. By implementing the ear-hanging technique aquaculturists can literally pin scallop shells to a grow out line which holds them in place. Ear hanging is the process of drilling a small hole in the hinge (ear) of a scallop shell, and inserting a specialized plastic age-pin to attach them to ‘grow out’ lines hung vertically in the water column. Compared to efforts implemented in Maine using bottom cages and trays to grow scallops to maturity, Japanese ear-hung scallops typically show faster growth, experience lower mortality and have a larger meat yields, due to uncrowded growing conditions and access to ample nutrients in the water column.

This project builds on a more than century-long relationship between Maine and Japan. Maine has been exchanging information and sharing insights into fisheries, energy practices, art, culture and education with its “sister state’ of Aomori Prefecture since 1994, although the origins of the relationship traces back to 1889. That year the 1,500-ton Cheseborough (a Bath, Maine built ship) wrecked off the coast of Aomori during a typhoon. Local citizens from the village of Shariki rescued four survivors and buried those who died, including Captain Peter Erickson. Two Maine groups, the Maine Aomori Sister State Advisory Council and the Friends of Aomori have kept the relationship thriving for over 20 years.

For the past eight years, CEI has been working in partnership with Maine Sea Grant and the Friends of Aomori to further the development of a Maine scallop farming industry. It was during a visit to Japan in 2010 that Cowperthwaite was introduced to equipment manufacturer Mutsu Kaden Tokki Co. that has been able to mechanize several labor-intensive steps to farming scallops. Principals from Mutsu Kaden Tokki Co. visited Maine in 2011 and 2014 to meet with shellfish growers who were beginning to grow scallops which.

After a year of planning, in October of 2016 CEI led a 10-member delegation to Aomori, Japan for an intensive one-week scallop aquaculture itinerary funded by the United States Japan Foundation. The exchange included a series of meetings with Mutsu Kaden Tokki Co.  as well as marine scientists, private businesses, fishing cooperatives and government officials.

Matthew Moretti, President of Bangs Island Mussel of Portland and Nate Perry, Pine Point Oyster Company of Cape Elizabeth were two members on the trip to Japan in 2016. Moretti and Perry have since been working with CEI staff to test the machines in Maine. “I’m excited to be a part of developing a new species for Maine farmers to grow. It’s important that we push the boundaries and work towards diversification” said Moretti.

Perry is no stranger to working with scallops. Over the past 8 years he has been perfecting collection techniques for wild scallop spat (seed) the essential element of scallop farming. “Without the seed, we won’t be able to build an industry” said Perry.

CEI negotiated a trial of the machines conducted in the summer and fall of 2017 and the results were promising. CEI then purchased the three machines with grant support from the Maine Technology Institute. For the three-year research effort, the team will also include Togue Brawn who runs Downeast Dayboat, a business with expertise in buying and selling fresh wild dayboat scallops to consumers across New England. “Maine produces the absolute best scallops in the world, but we’ve failed to differentiate them from generic “scallops”. Cultivated scallops will help differentiate our superior product by providing a year-round supply and by helping consumers understand the factors that yield our superior scallops and unique varietals.” said Brawn.

While many are optimistic about the scallop market opportunities, the research project will also involve the expertise of resource economist Rachel Bouvier of rbouvier consulting. An economic assessment will investigate wild scallop markets when compared to farmed scallops. “It’s important to have a sense of what the market will bear, who will buy the scallops and for what price, as well as interactions with existing fisheries.” said Bouvier.

As harvest and demands increase over time, farmed scallops could create further opportunities within the seafood distribution supply-chain, creating marketplaces not just in Maine but beyond, to Boston, New York, and nationally. “Farmed scallops could be marketed and sold similar to oysters. For starters we could provide the end consumer with the farm name and where they were grown” said Brawn.

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

Celebrating a New Crop of Entrepreneurial Leaders: CEI Clients Win 2018 SBA Awards

 

April 19, 2018– Brunswick, ME Seven business leaders who have worked with CEI to plan and finance their enterprises are winners of the 2018 Maine Small Business Awards given by the U.S. Small Business Administration. They are: Heather Chandler, owner of The SunriseGuide, LLC of Portland; David Jacobson, David Jacobson Glass, LLC of Montville; Melissa Law, Benjamin Whalen, Abigail and Jeffrey Fisher, Bumbleroot Organic Farm, LLC of Windham; and Benjamin Okafor, Eastport Family Pharmacy.

CEI business advisors provide one-on-one, personalized advising services at no cost to current and potential business owners and managers in Maine through the Maine Small Business Development Center (Maine SBDC),the Women’s Business Center at CEI (WBC), and StartSmart, a program for entrepreneurs who immigrate to Maine. Business advisors at CEI have diverse educational and business experience.

The winning entrepreneurs from CEI’s business advising portfolio come from across the state:

Maine Young Entrepreneurs of the Year

Melissa Law, Benjamin Whalen, Abigail and Jeffrey Fisher, founders of Bumbleroot Organic Farm grew a two-acre farm in Buxton to 88 acres in South Windham with business advising and financing support from CEI. The farm is a rising leader in the southern Maine community because of its commitment to increasing access to locally-grown farm-fresh food, which is distributed to low-income and disadvantaged Mainers through programs including Creative Trails in Portland and My Place Teen Center in Westbrook, as well as accepting SNAP benefits. Sarah Guerette, Director of the Women’s Business Center (WBC) at CEI, worked closely with the Bumbleroot team during their expansion to a larger farm.

Maine and New England Micro-Enterprise of the Year

David Jacobson makes hand-blown and kiln-formed glass utilizing contemporary designs based in the Venetian tradition, mostly brightly colored functional objects: bowls, glasses, vases, platters, and sculptural objects. In 2013, with the help of CEI’s SBDC Advisor David Hill, David received a $100,000 loan from a New York City patron, and with the injection of $20,000 of personal capital, transformed his Montville barn into a fully equipped glass blowing studio. By building a multi-faceted business focused on blown-glass manufacturing, instruction, and hospitality, David has managed to persevere and thrive. Ever on the lookout for new and exciting business opportunities, David has learned new skills through a trip to Prague and the development of new products.

Maine Woman Owned Small Business of the Year

Since 2006, Heather Chandler has used the SunriseGuide to help Mainers expand their knowledge of sustainability across a broad spectrum of subject matters including food, health, energy choices, home life and more, while fueling the growth of the green economy in Maine. With support from the Women’s Business Center at CEI Heather has grown the business from a single product in 2006 (the annual green living guide and coupon book) to publishing three print publications, a mobile edition and a monthly e-newsletter/event listing.

The publication has made an impact on its readers:

  • 48% of readers said that the SunriseGuide helped them make healthier decisions for themselves and their families
  • 40% of readers said that the SunriseGuide has helped them learn ways to reduce their personal (or family’s) energy use and carbon footprint
  • 55% credited The SunriseGuide for helping them find greener options for products they were already going to buy.

Maine Minority Owned Small Business of the Year

Eastport Family Pharmacy owner Benjamin Okafor was named Maine Minority Small Business Owner of the Year. Originally from Nigeria, Ben worked as a pharmacist in London before he was recruited to work in Bangor. Driven to open his own pharmacy to support a rural Maine community with limited access to health care, Ben leased a 750-square-foot space to fill a need in this rural coastal community. Previously, residents had to drive almost 30 miles to fill prescriptions.  Committed to providing better service to his customers, Ben purchased and renovated a building right next door to the local health clinic two years ago. As a result he doubled the size of his operation, and installed a drive-up window, a popular feature with residents.  The pharmacy also offers free home deliveries within 25 miles. For the past three years, Ben has worked closely with Ruth Cash-Smith, Business Advisor with the WBC at CEI.

Maine Small Business Persons of the Year

In addition to providing advice to entrepreneurs, CEI also arranges a variety of capital solutions for new and growing companies. The SBA Maine Small Business Persons of the Year worked with CEI to arrange a startup loan and access workforce support when launching Sea Bags.

Sea Bags President Beth Shissler and its CEO Don Oakes have been selected as SBA’s Maine Small Business Persons of the Year and will represent the state in the competition for National Small Business Person of the Year. Portland-based Sea Bags is a designer and manufacturer of totes and accessories made from recycled sail cloth. Today Sea Bags has 13 company-owned stores, two offices and a warehouse facility. The SBA selected Sea Bags for their marquis award based on the continued growth of the business, and the support that the leadership team has shown for the small business community in Maine.

The Maine District Office of the Small Business Administration will recognize all of the 2018 Maine Small Business Award recipients at a reception and awards presentation at 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday, May 1st at the Harraseekett Inn in Freeport. For additional information about the reception please call 207-622-8551 or e-mail keith.lind@sba.gov.

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

New USDA Loan Program Helps Maine Nonprofit Invest in Community

Seedlings to Sunflowers, Gorham, Maine

Loan Officer Daniel Wallace writes about the USDA Community Facilities Relending Program in a recent Daily Yonder article. This lending program was created in 2016 to provide long-term, low-cost financing for community lenders like CEI who work in impoverished rural and Native American communities.

Central Lincoln County YMCA, Damariscotta, Maine

CEI’s financing using the USDA Community Facilities Relending Program includes the expansion of Central Lincoln County YMCA in Damariscotta and the construction of Seedlings to Sunflowers daycare center in Gorham.

Read the full article, New USDA Loan Program Helps Maine Nonprofit Invest in Community, here.

Three CEI Food Business Clients Win Sofi Awards

CEI is pleased to congratulate three portfolio businesses, all from Maine, as the recipients of sofi awards from the Specialty Food Association:

  • Gelato Fiasco – Brunswick – silver sofi award for its Big ‘Ole Peanut Butter gelato
  • Maine Crisp Co. – Waterville – bronze sofi award for its Cranberry Almond Crisps
  • Grandy Oats – Hiram – New Product award for its Coffee Crunch Coconola

Read more in the Press Herald’s article.

CEI Ventures Invests in Hyperlite Mountain Gear and Pika Energy

During the first quarter of 2018, CEI Ventures invested in Hyperlite Mountain Gear of Biddeford, and Pika Energy of Westbrook.

In a recently published Bangor Daily News article, Chandler Jones, principal at CEI Ventures, said of Hyperlite Mountain Gear, “They’re a prime example of what can happen in a flyover state like Maine. They’ve been able to build on a legacy industry [textiles] that had fallen on bad times. They are part of the resurgence of that industry.”

Another article published by the Press Herald describes these significant venture capital investments.