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When the New Mexico Small Business Investment Corp. formed in 2001, its founders envisioned the organization directly owning minority stakes in a large number of small New Mexico businesses that had received federal loans from the Small Business Administration or U.S. Department of Agriculture. While this seemed like a good idea at the time, it was a challenge to implement.
After several amendments to the founding statute, the NMSBIC formed cooperative agreements with professional capital and service providers, which the organization considered better qualified and staffed to make equity investments.
The organization’s first equity commitment -- of $1.5 million, as a limited partner — was in 2004 to a small local fund, Flywheel Ventures I. Since then, Flywheel Ventures I has raised more than $30 million for equity investments in early stage technology companies, making it the largest New Mexico-based fund. Flywheel Ventures I was the first equity fund with headquarters in New Mexico.
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