In May, IFF closed loans totaling approximately $22.6 million for 16 community-driven projects in the Midwest. We’ve included information below about several of the loans and what the organizations that received them are doing with the capital. To learn more about IFF’s lending, visit our Capital Solutions page.
Allegiant Preparatory Academy
IFF closed a $300,000 loan that provided Allegiant Preparatory Academy (APA), a K-5 public charter school in Indianapolis, IN, with the capital needed to complete tenant improvements to a new facility the academy will move into for the 2023-2024 school year. Founded in 2018, APA focuses on providing students with rigorous academics, character development, and the skills needed to succeed in college and in life. APA currently serves 140 students and had outgrown its previous location. By moving into its new, 22,000-square-foot facility and completing renovations to ensure the building is up to code and meets all local and state requirements to operate, the school will have the capacity to expand to 250 students by the 2027-2028 school year. The facility is owned by a child care provider that also operates in the building, and APA moving in will provide parents of children enrolled in the early childhood education (ECE) program with a high-quality elementary school option under the same roof. IFF’s Real Estate Solutions team conducted a feasibility analysis for APA that helped guide the school’s decision to lease the facility.
Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, St. Louis Chapter
IFF closed a loan of approximately $316,000 that provided the St. Louis Chapter of the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA-STL) with working capital to purchase supplies needed to administer a program that equips schools in Illinois and Missouri with medication, equipment, and education to treat students when an asthma attack occurs. The purchase is a component of an expansion of the organization’s RESCUE program, which is designed to prevent unnecessary hospitalizations among students by providing schools with the resources needed to treat asthma attacks on-site. AAFA-STL estimates that about 300,000 school-aged children in Illinois and Missouri are living with asthma, and the organization is seeking to expand its RESCUE program to serve 65,000 students this year – a 225 percent increase over its 2022 total.
B’s Hometown Market
IFF provided a loan of approximately $475,000 to B’s Hometown Market, a locally owned grocery store located in rural La Crosse, KS (population 1,248). The loan financed the acquisition of the store’s facility, in addition to the purchase of equipment and inventory needed to operate the store, which opened in April 2023. Owned by Pat and Kelly Baalmann, B’s Hometown Market is the only full-service grocery store in a 25-mile radius, meeting a critical need for nutritious, affordable food in the area. The facility where the store is located previously housed a successful grocery store for more than 30 years, which closed in 2018 when the owner retired. A subsequent grocery store was opened under new ownership, but unpaid taxes forced its closure last summer. To address the unmet need in La Crosse for pantry staples like fresh produce, dairy, and meat, the Baalmann’s leaned in to purchase the property, complete renovations, and purchase equipment for the store before opening B’s Hometown Market. The store’s opening created four full-time jobs in La Crosse. Additional funding and financing for the project was provided by the Kansas Healthy Food Initiative, the City of La Crosse, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, TIFF/SEED, as well as owner’s equity and a low-interest community loan.
Chicago International Puppet Theater Festival
IFF closed a $50,000 loan that provided Chicago International Puppet Theater Festival (CIPTF) with a line of credit through the MacArthur Arts and Culture Loan Fund (ACLF). Founded in 2014 as a project within Blair Thomas & Co., CIPTF is a Chicago-based, now annual puppetry festival that takes place over 12 days and is the largest event dedicated to the art form in North America. CIPTF reaches more than 14,000 people each year at dozens of cultural institutions in communities all around Chicago — totaling 70,000 audience members in the first five editions of the festivals to date. The line of credit will help CIPTF manage cash flow amid a performance schedule that results in uneven revenue month over month and bridge grant funding. Blair Thomas & Co. previously leveraged a line of credit through ACLF that matured as scheduled in July 2022.
Justine Petersen Housing and Reinvestment Corporation
IFF closed a $2 million loan for Justine Petersen Housing and Reinvestment Corp. (Justine PETERSEN) that provided the Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) with working capital to support its lending programs to consumers, small businesses, and nonprofits across 22 states. Headquartered in St. Louis, MO, Justine PETERSEN’s mission is to connect institutional resources with the needs of low-to-moderate-income individuals and families, helping them build assets and create enduring change for themselves and their communities. The organization has drastically increased its lending since the onset of the pandemic, and the loan from IFF will provide Justine PETERSEN with additional liquidity to support its growth. IFF previously provided a $500,000 loan to the organization in 2020 to support its Contractor Loan Fund.
IFF closed a $215,000 loan for Lifeline Theatre (Lifeline) that refinanced a maturing mortgage from a commercial lender for the performing arts nonprofit’s 9,500-square-foot facility in Chicago’s Rogers Park neighborhood. Founded in 1985, Lifeline is an award-winning theatre company that has produced more than 140 shows since its inception. In addition to its performances, the organization offers free workshops in partnership with local schools and libraries, a student matinee theatre program, and a residency program for artists. While the lender for Lifeline’s maturing mortgage was willing to refinance, a quoted interest rate of 7.25-8% caused Lifeline to pursue less costly financing from IFF.
Martindale Brightwood Community Development Corporation
IFF closed a $1.5 million loan that provided Martindale Brightwood Community Development Corporation (MBCDC) with capital for the acquisition of 20,450 square feet of space in a permanent facility for offices and programming. Founded in 1992 to address the needs of residents living in the Martindale Brightwood neighborhood immediately northeast of downtown Indianapolis, the organization’s work focuses on building a holistic community through housing, employment, economic development, and environmental justice. After leasing space for more than 20 years, the purchase will enable the organization to build equity and provide it with more than ten times the space it had in its previous location. Moving forward, MBCDC expects to reach 400 clients and participants annually through financial and homebuyer workshops, workforce development trainings, housing repair and maintenance, along with community-building events – a 30 percent increase over its capacity in its previous location. The project is a catalyst to attracting further investment towards revitalization in Martindale Brightwood neighborhoods. IFF’s Real Estate Solutions team conducted a facility assessment for MBCDC prior to the organization’s acquisition.
IFF closed a $1.5 million loan for Orchard Village that will enable the nonprofit to acquire and rehabilitate a 7,500-square-foot facility in Skokie, IL, across the street from its main operating location. Serving approximately 300 clients annually, Orchard Village partners with families, community members, and area businesses to provide adults with disabilities with the tools and resources they need to achieve independent and fulfilling lives that are integrated with the community. The nonprofit accomplishes this through programs and services focused on housing, employment, education, health, and more. Currently operating over capacity in its primary location, the $2.7 million acquisition and rehab of its new facility across the street will provide Orchard Village with additional space to expand its programs and reduce the length of its wait list for services.
T&H Investment Properties, Inc.
IFF closed a $700,000 loan that provided WBE-certified T&H Investment Properties with predevelopment financing for a project in Noblesville, IN, that will create 51 townhomes for renters earning less than 60 percent of the Area Median Income (AMI). Each townhome will be approximately 1,400 square feet, with three bedrooms, free Wi-Fi, full-size Energy Star appliances, and universal design features. The development will also maximize sustainability with a National Green Building Standard Designation. The project is located less than a mile from numerous amenities, including parks, a post office, grocery stores, restaurants, banks, retail establishments, a community college, and more. Additional sources of funding and financing for the project include 9% Low-Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTCs), the Indiana Housing & Community Development Authority, Community Development Block Grant soft funds, HOME soft funds, and a deferred developer fee.
IFF also closed a $600,000 predevelopment loan for T&H Investment Properties that will help facilitate the creation of 40, scattered-site townhomes for renters earning less than 60 percent of the Area Median Income (AMI) in Sullivan, IN. Like the development in Noblesville, each townhome will be approximately 1,400 square feet, with three bedrooms, free Wi-Fi, full-size Energy Star appliances, and universal design features. The townhomes will also provide residents with easy access to a variety of nearby amenities, including banks, parks, restaurants, shopping, social service facilities, and more. Additional sources of funding and financing for the project include 9% Low-Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTCs), the Indiana Housing & Community Development Authority, HOME, and a deferred developer fee.
Wee Care Christian Learning Center
IFF closed a $997,500 loan for Wee Care Christian Learning Center (Wee Care) that provided the nonprofit child care center with the capital needed to acquire a 10,600-square-foot strip mall in Monee, IL, that it leased space in previously to serve as its second permanent location. Founded in 1998, Wee Care provides Christian-based care for infants and children up to the age of 13, offering before school, daytime, and afterschool care. Wee Care’s acquisition of the property will enable the provider to increase enrollment in its programs from 127 slots to 170 slots, provide additional outdoor space for play and activities, and enable the nonprofit to build its net assets and gain a new source of revenue by renting out space in the facility the organization purchased.