Since 2004, Dakota Business Lending has been offering the SBA 504 loan program to small businesses located in 5 counties in western Minnesota – Ottertail, Polk, Becker, Clay, and Wilkin. In 2022, they expanded all their special loan programs to be available across these 5 counties as well, bringing even more financing solutions to small businesses.

Today, they are a multi-state CDC serving the entire state of Minnesota.

Meet the MN Team

Meet Jason, Scott, Steve, and Ann – the driving forces of Dakota Business Lending in Minnesota! With a passion for helping small businesses on their entrepreneurial journey, these four are always going the extra mile to set businesses up for success. Collaboration is their strong suit, and they seek to create partnerships that will help you secure the financing you need to start, expand, and truly make an impact.

Whether your in the beginning stages of planning your startup business or are ready to grow and expand your established business, our MN team is here for you.

Jason Gerdes

Business Development Officer

Scott Schake

Business Development Officer

Steve Dusek


Tyler Byron

Business Development Officer

SBA 504 Loan Program in Minnesota

Dakota Business Lending in Minnesota offers the SBA 504 loan program – one of the best kept secrets in the small business financing world today. The program can finance long-term fixed assets and offers benefits such as:


Up to 90% financing


10, 20, and 25-year term options


Fixed, below-market interest rates


Minimum 10% down payment

SBA 504 Structure Examples

Depending on the type of business and what the loan will be used for, there are several ways that your loan may be structured.

The typical SBA 504 loan is structured in a 50-40-10 model:

  • 50% financed by a third party lender
  • 40% financed by Dakota Business Lending and the SBA
  • 10% financed by the borrower in the form of a down payment

View more loan structure examples here -> 

*Loan structure may vary. Please contact us to learn more & get specific details on your project’s structure.

The SBA 504 Loan Program in Action

The real measure of our success and impact is told in the stories of our borrowers: the entrepreneurs and businesses that dared to turn a dream into a plan into a reality.  Check out how the SBA 504 loan program helped this physical therapy and fitness center in Moorhead, MN.

Total Balance Physical Therapy and Fitness

  • Born with an entrepreneurial mindset, Dr. Dan Johnson knew he wanted to start a private physical therapy practice of his own someday
  • Opened Total Balance North Fargo, ND in November 2017
  • Opened two additional locations (Hawley, MN and South Fargo, ND) within two years
  • Used the SBA 504 loan program to open a fourth addition in his hometown of Moorhead, MN
  • Now has over 20 full-time and close to 30 part-time employees

Other Loan Programs

In 2022, Dakota Business Lending expanded all their special loan programs to be available across the state. Learn more about these additional programs and the financing opportunities they offer for small business owners.

Borrower Resources

There are a variety of FREE resources and programs available for small businesses throughout Minnesota. Here are a few that we commonly refer our borrowers to for entrepreneurial development resources such as education, training, and technical assistance:

Women Venture

Assists current & potential women business owners with training, technology, & business development

MN Small Business Development Center

Assists small businesses with business plans and financial projections

SCORE Mentors

Retired business owners volunteer to mentor and counsel small business owners

The Small Business Administration (SBA) website also contains a wealth of information on starting and running a business, including:

Small Business Resource Guide

Download this guide that includes various aspects on starting and operating a business

SBA Learning Center

This portal includes many online training courses on almost every aspect of business ownership

Dakota Business Newsletter

Email dedicated to providing valuable information about starting & growing a small business

Lender Resources

Are you wanting to know more about the SBA 504 loan program and if it’s the right fit for your borrower? Download our resources below to get an overview of the SBA 504 / Debt Refinance programs and their requirements.

Meet the Minnesota Loan Review Committee

In order to better serve the state of Minnesota, Dakota Business Lending has created a separate loan committee for their Minnesota office comprised of representatives from various sectors in business, lending, and economic development throughout the state.

Anthony Hanson

First Elected - 2023

Currently serving as President of Citizens Bank & Trust in Hutchinson, MN, Anthony brings extensive knowledge in the banking, finance, and lending industry to the Minnesota Loan Review Committee. His experience and perspective allow him to help find the best financing solutions for borrowers throughout the state.

Clay Sharkey

First Elected - 2023

Clay knows the ins and outs of assessing risk, consumer credit, and what it takes to make financing successful. He has an extensive understanding in the credit world and serves as the Chief Credit Officer for Pioneer Bank in Mankato, MN. As the owner of Beans Coffee Company, he also brings firsthand knowledge about running and growing a business.

Ryan DeBates

First Elected - 2023

As Market President for Security Savings Bank in Luverne, MN, Ryan’s daily work in business financing makes him a valuable resource for helping businesses get the capital they need to succeed. His 25+ years of experience in the banking/lending world and knowledge in all types of lending provides a significant perspective to the MN LRC.

Brent O'Neil

First Elected - 2023

Brent lives out his passion for helping local businesses and communities thrive in his role as Economic Development Director for the City of Elk River. His years of economic development provide a valuable perspective that is instrumental to the success of businesses in MN.

Jeremy Gossen

First Elected - 2023

As President/CFO for Carlson & Steward Refrigeration, Inc. in Marshall, MN, Jeremy understands firsthand what it takes to manage & grow a business. His real-world experience, coupled with 18 years in the banking world, makes him a great advocate, partner, & advisor to small businesses across the state.