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LVEDC Wins Prestigious ‘Excellence in Development Finance Program’ Award

By Colin McEvoy on October 21, 2016

The Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corporation (LVEDC) has been selected to receive the prestigious Excellence in Development Finance Program Award from the Council of Development Finance Agencies (CDFA).

The award specifically recognizes the Lehigh Valley Lending Network, a revolutionary partnership between LVEDC and 15 Lehigh Valley banks that offers a single point of entry to both private and public financing.

“We’re honored to receive this recognition for the Lehigh Valley Lending Network, which we believe has the potential to serve as a best practice across the country,” said Don Cunningham, LVEDC President and CEO.

“Most regions aren’t fortunate enough to having competing banks working in this unique way to support regional economic growth,” Cunningham said. “This is made possible because of the commitment our banks and the strength of a regional economic development effort led by LVEDC.”

The award will be presented at the CDFA National Summit in New Orleans next month, where LVEDC Vice President of Finance John Kingsley has also been invited to speak as an expert panelist in the session “Creative Access to Capital Solutions.”

The Lehigh Valley Lending Network streamlines the process for businesses seeking financing and new bank relationships, allowing them to simultaneously access and shop commercial lending institutions and economic development resource providers, all in one spot.

“Many companies find it exhausting and difficult to find the right bank for their needs and understand the myriad of financing programs available,” Kingsley said. “The Lehigh Valley Lending Network simplifies that process, allowing them to canvass many resources through a single inquiry and ultimately identify the best possible financing options for their specific needs.”

The CDFA Excellence in Development Finance Program Award is presented to a development finance agency that has implemented an innovative new or particularly successful program, according to the organization.

In order to be eligible, the agency must have achieved recent success in the way development finance programs are operated, managed and administered, according to the CDFA. The goal of granting the award is to make the groundbreaking work done by development finance agencies in our industry more widely known.

“CDFA is proud to honor LVEDC on their efforts to help promote the exciting economic growth that is occurring in the Lehigh Valley area,” said Toby Rittner, CDFA President and CEO. “The Lehigh Valley Lending Network is an exemplary partnership and serves as a fine model for others in our industry to follow.”

Banks participating in the Lehigh Valley Lending Network include Bank of America, BB&T Bank, Conestoga Bank, Embassy Bank, Lafayette Ambassador Bank, M&T Bank, National Penn Bank, New Tripoli Bank, PNC Bank, Peoples Security Bank, Provident Bank, Santander Bank, TD Bank, Wells Fargo, and Unity Bank.

Watch the video below for more information about the Network and how businesses can access it:

To be eligible for the Network, a company must have a profitable operating history during at least two of the past three years, and must be locating or expanding their business within the Lehigh Valley. To access the banks in the Network, the company cannot have an existing lending relationship with a Lehigh Valley bank, or must be unable to obtain the lending services or products they require through their existing relationship.

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Lehigh ValleyQuick Facts

  • Industry Spotlight

    14.2% of Labor Force
    Employed in Professional & Business Services
    Q4 2016

  • By the Numbers
    $37 Billion

    Gross Domestic Product

  • Investor Spotlight
    City Center Lehigh Valley
  • Industry Spotlight

    10.2% of Labor Force
    Employed in Manufacturing
    Q4 2016

  • By the Numbers
    $4.3 Billion

    Exports (2015)

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    Air Products
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    1325 Total Office Buildings

  • By the Numbers
    $58,134

    Median Household Income

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    PPL Electric Utilities
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    1707 Total Industrial Buildings

  • By the Numbers
    24,400

    New Jobs Created Over Past 5 Years

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    National Penn
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    4.8% Industrial
    Vacancy Rate

  • By the Numbers
    658,477

    Population

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    Olympus
  • Industry Spotlight

    8.8% Office
    Vacancy Rate

  • By the Numbers
    336,100

    Labor Force

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    Lutron Electronics
  • Industry Spotlight

    10% of Labor Force
    Employed in Leisure & Hospitality
    Q4 2016

  • By the Numbers
    4,359

    Technology Patents from 2000-2013

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    Mack Trucks
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    1.6% of Labor Force
    Employed in Food & Beverage Manufacturing
    Q4 2016

  • By the Numbers
    25 Million

    Office Inventory (Square Feet)

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    UGI
  • By the Numbers
    108 Million

    Industrial Inventory (Square Feet)

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    NFI