Monthly Archives: May 2014

Grandpoint client helps outfit Kentucky Derby & Preakness winner

According to Larry Sallinger, vice chair and Orange County regional manager of Grandpoint Bank, one of the best things about being a commercial banker is getting to work with so many interesting businesses, including Thoro’Bred Racing Platesscreen-shot-2016-09-13-at-11-07-51-am – the company that made the shoes California Chromescreen-shot-2016-09-13-at-11-07-51-am wore to handily win the 2014 Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes.

The Anaheim-based company has been producing horse shoes – also known as racing plates – for 65 years.  Equine legends such as Secretariat, John Henry and Cigar – plus many more – have worn Thoro’Bred shoes as they raced to victory.

Thoro’Bred Racing was started in 1949 by Bruce Kinney, and has been operated for the past 30 years by Edwin (Ed) Kinney.   It is one of many manufacturing companies that Grandpoint serves in Orange County.

“We enjoy going to Thoro’Bred’s place of business,” says Terry Zippwald, an account officer with Grandpoint Bank.  “It’s like stepping back in time and going to the blacksmith’s shop, except this shop is 34,000 square feet.”  The company also has separate shipping and storage facilities.

Thoro’Bred is a specialty industry that manufactures hundreds of different types of horseshoes for customers locally and worldwide. Thoro’Bred makes specialized shoes for all types of horses, miniature horses, quarter horses, thoroughbred horses, police horses and for the family pet. For racing, horses need different shoes for different track conditions, so shoes may need to be changed on a very frequent basis. Aluminum racing plates last up to six weeks, but usually are changed every month.

Thoro’Bred has been a customer of Grandpoint for seven years, using a variety of the bank’s business services. Because Thoro’Bred’s shoes are worn throughout the world, Grandpoint provides international banking services to the company. In addition, Mr. Kinney has attended Grandpoint Bank’s annual economic forecast held in association with Chapman University.

At Thoro’Bred, the goal is “to make the farrier’s* job easier and every horse a winner,” which mirrors Grandpoint’s goal to help make every businessperson’s job easier and every business successful.

Congratulations to Thoro’Bred on its winning association with California Chrome!

And here’s hoping that California Chrome wins the Triple Crown!

*A person who shoes horses

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Crowdfunding : A new panacea for early stage companies?

Facebook’s recent acquisition of Oculus VR for $2B, after raising $2.4M on Kickstarter without giving away any equity, makes Crowdfunding look like a no brainer for any new company. Indeed, many entrepreneurs see these high profile examples of successful crowdfunding and think it will be easy for them to avoid raising an equity round or to demonstrate market validation to future investors.  However, according to Grandpoint’s SVP and Director of Technology and Venture Banking Petra Griffith, “Crowdfunding is not a panacea to fundraising – it’s hard work and much more akin to traditional fundraising than people might think.”

If you think crowdfunding might be a good tool for you, here are some tips to consider:

  • Build your brand and social media presence and have a core of dedicated followers before you begin a crowdfunding campaign.  “Think of a crowdfunding site as more of a transaction platform than a brand-building platform…Start with who you know. With early stage companies, people invest in people as much as the product. Take stock of all your relationships, from family and friends to your business and social networks, online and offline. Alumni groups are great sources of support, for example.”
  • Plan to have 30 percent of your funding lined up before you start your campaign, and work all your sources and contacts to keep the interest alive. “You want potential investors to see momentum, and not meeting your goal is the kiss of death.  Your campaign has to have traction,” cautions Petra. “Keep the discussion going through blogs, Twitter, Facebook and other social media as well as traditional channels such as public relations, email, phone calls and good old-fashioned personal contact.”
  • Don’t expect to raise millions of dollars through crowdfunding, although it can happen; it’s typically a source for small amounts of investment, and best suited for early stage companies with both a compelling product – especially consumer products – and message.

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