Since its inception forty years ago, the Vermont Economic Development Authority (VEDA) has approved 7,395 separate economic development financings totaling over $2.07 billion for Vermont businesses and farms. Created by the Vermont General Assembly in 1974, VEDA’s financing approvals through June 30, 2014 include direct commercial loans of over $352 million, agricultural loans exceeding $261 million, and since 1987, small business loans totaling almost $65 million.These and other measures of the Authority’s contributions to Vermont’s economy over the years will be presented today at VEDA’s 40th Annual Meeting in Burlington. Governor Peter Shumlin will speak at the event, as will UBS Investment Bank Senior Investment Strategist Brian Rose.VEDA’s 2014 Annual Report is available for viewing online at www.veda.org(link is external).“When the Authority was formed in 1974,” said Jo Bradley, VEDA’s Chief Executive Officer, “its exclusive focus – as its name, the “Vermont Industrial Development Authority (VIDA),” conveyed — was on industrial development in Vermont. The Authority supported the efforts of local development corporations to build and tenant industrial parks throughout the state. Over the decades, that focus has broadened significantly to keep pace with Vermont’s evolving economy in an ever-changing world.” Starting with a Legislative appropriation of $1 million in 1974, VEDA has grown to $234 million in Assets under management, with a loan portfolio at June 30, 2014 reflecting an industry mix of 33% agriculture, 21% services, 18% manufacturing, 14% tourism, 8%wholesale/retail trades, and 6% other commercial.In FY 2014, the Authority closed 254 separate financings totaling $59.8 million. The Authority’s FY 2014 financings leveraged private capital totaling almost $82 million. Of the loans VEDA closed in FY 2014, 33% were for commercial projects, 31% were agricultural loans, 23% were tax-exempt conduit bonds, and 14% were for small business projects.Also during FY 2014, the Entrepreneurial Loan Program was developed to help meet the working capital and capital-asset financing needs of Vermont- based businesses in seed, start-up and growth stages.“VEDA’s innovations in economic development financing over the years have helped thousands of businesses and farms create jobs for Vermonters,” said Bradley. “In addition to supporting Vermont’s commercial, agricultural and small business sectors, VEDA has helped bring Vermont’s economy through a deep national recession, and provided over $18 million in emergency resources to help businesses and farms recover from damages wrought by Tropical Storm Irene and other natural disasters. We have also developed lending programs to support investments in technology and energy in our state. None of this would have been possible without the tremendous support of the Administration, the Vermont General Assembly, our many economic development partners at the federal, state, and regional levels and Vermont’s commercial lenders.”About VEDAThe Vermont Economic Development Authority (VEDA) is Vermont’s statewide economic development finance lender. VEDA was created by the General Assembly in 1974 with a mission “to contribute to the creation and retention of quality jobs in Vermont by providing loans and other financial support to eligible and qualified Vermont industrial, commercial and agricultural enterprises.”VEDA offers a wide range of low-cost lending options for Vermont businesses and farms of all sizes, and the Authority’s lending solutions are customized to each borrower’s individual needs. Whether in the form of direct loans, tax-exempt bond issuance or loan guarantee support, VEDA’s innovative financing programs help ensure that Vermont businesses and farms have the capital they need to grow and succeed. VEDA most often lends in conjunction with banks and other financing partners, helping to stimulate economic development activity in Vermont.Since 1974, VEDA has provided over $2.07 billion in financing assistance to thousands of eligible Vermont entrepreneurs, manufacturers, small businesses, family farms, and agricultural enterprises, helping them to realize their business growth goals, create jobs, and enhance the vitality of Vermont’s economy.Source: VEDA. 10.31.2014. For more information about VEDA’s financing programs, visit www.veda.org(link is external) or call 802-828-JOBS.