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GFDA Top 15 12-9-13

1) Mighty Mo Brewing Company opened on Central Avenue downtown, along with Belles and Lace Bridal, Neighbor in Need and Darrin Schreder Photography & Design. The Celtic Cowboy Pub & Restaurant held its official opening. What a great week for downtown Great Falls!
2) The Great Falls metro area climbed 21 spots in the Milken Institute's annual Best-Performing Cities overall ranking to 79th out of the country's 179 smaller metro areas. The ranking is based on 9 measures of job growth, 4 of which focus on high tech. We ranked 41st for job growth from 2007-2012, 46th for wage growth from 2006-2011 and 10th for High Tech GDP Growth from 2007-2012. Of the 11 western metro areas we benchmark with, our overall ranking for 2013 is ahead of 3 cities and behind 8, so we still have much work ahead of us, but we keep climbing! Here is a link to the full report: Milken Institute Best-Performing Cities 2013
3) We exhibited at the Montana Grain Growers Association annual conference in Great Falls, networking with agri-processors, grain producers and industry professionals.
4) Worked with an entrepreneur who is looking to purchase portions of a business they have managed for years. Started with analyzing financials to determine debt service capacity. 
5) Travelled with the CEO of a Great Falls operation to meet with MT Dept. of Commerce officials in Helena in regard to Primary Workforce Training grants. 
6) The Great Falls City Commission approved a development agreement for the Talus apartment project.
7) Huckleberry Healthcare celebrated its first year in business on Wednesday. Congratulations on your amazing work Denise for Untaming Your Entrepreneurial Spirit in Great Falls!
8) Received the first draft of a database report on primary sector businesses in Cascade County that we commissioned to help us identify companies with expansion potential.
9) Submitted our manufacturing partnership business development plan to the Economic Development Administration as part of our effort to leverage GFDA local investor funds to increase our business expansion, start-up and attraction efforts.
10) SBA announced that small, non-farm businesses in Glacier, Pondera and Toole counties are now eligible to apply for low-interest federal SBA disaster loans. Contact Rebecca Engum, our Small Business Development Center Director, at 1-406-771-9032 or
11) The Made in Montana tradeshow will be held in Helena March 21-22, 2014. Exhibitor registration is open at
12) Spoke to the Uptown Optimist Club regarding economic growth, diversification and high wage jobs. If you would like a speaker for your club, team or organization, contact Jolene Bach at 1-406-750-4481 or
13) 90% of the net new jobs in Montana from October 2012 to October 2013 were created in the state's three metro areas (Billings, Great Falls and Missoula), according to data released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
14) We put the finishing touches on our new Small Business Training Center in GFDA's office. The new space and technology will allow us to better serve small businesses and entrepreneurs throughout the Great Falls trade area.
15) Hosted our first small group investor briefing. These one hour conversations help keep current and prospective GFDA investors informed of our strategies, projects and results. Contact Jolene Bach to learn more about these events at 1-406-750-4481 or

Have a great week!



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Fax 406-454-2995
Physical Address
300 Central Ave. Suite 406
Great Falls, MT 59401
Mailing Address
PO Box 949
Great Falls, MT 59403