AOC is unique in that we believe ourselves not only to be an opportunity for small businesses to be able to access loan funds and support services, but to be a community. A community of dedicated businesses, though spread among different industries, working through many of the same obstacles as their businesses grow. Therefore, there is a chance to help one another minimize these challenges by sharing thoughts, experiences, resources, and information. We also have a dedicated group of investors, and board members interested in assisting all our borrowers connect with strategic partnerships and alliances.
Our Quarterly Connect events are appropriately held once every three months at various locations around Portland. These events are structured to not only create a warm regular networking environment, but to be a place for difficult dialogues, speakers, trainings, important informational check ins, etc. Depending on the subject matter and purpose of the specific event, the AOC borrowers, advisors, staff and board members will be invited to participate.
These events have free drinks and snacks and invitations are usually sent out at least a month in advance to help ensure invitees ability to attend. Borrowers do have an opportunity to give feedback and recommendations on topics that would be beneficial to them and their business.