EDA denies loan for downtown business

The Elk River Economic Development Authority (EDA) has rejected a loan request from a woman looking to open a coffee shop and fitness studio at Granite Shores in downtown Elk River.

Kacey Bottineau, owner of Soul, had requested a $62,304 Energy Efficiency Improvement Program Micro Loan.

The level of risk associated with the business plan and the limited experience of the owner were among the factors cited by the EDA Finance Committee in recommending denial of the loan. The EDA would also like to clarify whether such loans should cover only the cost of the energy efficiency improvements, or if they can be broader than that.

The EDA Finance Committee recommended that Soul solidify a client base, build experience and seek private financing from a source such as the U.S. Small Business Administration.

“The project itself could very well be a good project,” EDA Commissioner Paul Motin said during the Monday,  March 11 EDA meeting. “It’s an interesting concept.”