Putting Businesses On The Map Is Their Passion
Support small businesses like Martinez Geospatial, a veteran and minority-owned business that is creating jobs and community development in the Twin Cities.
When Anthony Martinez retired from the military in 1974, he used the skills he gained as a topographic mapper to secure a job as a draftsman at the Minnesota Department of Transportation (DOT) and also worked as a technician at a private aerial mapping firm. In 1961, Anthony started the mapping department at the DOT. After 11 years at the DOT and a couple more in private industry, Anthony, an entrepreneur at heart, decided to start his own mapping service, Martinez Ortho-Mapping Inc. It continued to grow and in 1991, Anthony brought his wife Guadalupe and son Stephen in as partners and re-named the company Martinez Geospatial. Today, this 100 percent minority-owned, family operated small business provides aerial mapping, land surveying, and high definition scanning services as well as computer aided drafting / design and geographic information systems to public and private sector clients nationwide.
Due to changes in the industry, the company needed to upgrade its technology for mapping, surveying and scanning to expand its capabilities, increase sales and increase margins. It had weathered the recession with only one down year as well as the federal budget sequester, and had been profitable the last two years. But, when he went to apply for a loan at local banks, Anthony was turned down because of a lack of collateral and one tough year, even though the company was trending upward.
Fortunately, Patrick at the Metropolitan Economic Development Association (MEDA) referred Anthony to Community Reinvestment Fund, USA (CRF), a Community Development Financial Institution that provides small business loans to those who have trouble accessing traditional capital. CRF was impressed by the company’s history, management expertise and experience in the industry; in other words, the story behind the numbers. As a community impact lender, CRF also liked that Martinez Geospatial is certified with various government agencies throughout the nation as a Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE), Minority Business Enterprise (MBE), and Small Business Enterprise (SBE). The icing on the cake was that the loan would help create additional living wage jobs.
By joining the Ours to Own movement, you are helping local community lenders like CRF provide much needed capital to small businesses like Martinez Geospatial. It’s an unfortunate reality that countless smart, passionate, and dedicated entrepreneurs like Anthony struggle so hard to attract the investment that will allow them to grow their business and fuel the local economy. Through our collective small investments, the Ours to Own community is working to change that.