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Mike Gilkey of Level One Bank Goes to Washington

Mike Gilkey, vice president of commercial banking for Farmington Hills-based Level One Bank, recently participated in the “White House Recognition of Manufacturing Success in Rural America” event in Washington, D.C.

The event celebrated successful rural manufacturing businesses that have received support from USDA/Rural Development programs and their facilitating financial partners.

In 2009, Level One Bank was approached by automotive supplier Aztec Manufacturing, located in Romulus, which was in need of replacement financing in order to stay in business; this after their existing bank had asked them to leave because its loan portfolio included too many Michigan firms involved in manufacturing for the auto industry.

Mike Gilkey and Level One Bank developed for Aztek a financial credit package utilizing supporting USDA programs, which provided a range of financial guarantees.

“At the time of Aztec’s request we were aware of financial support provided by the USDA. After conducting additional due diligence we knew we had a good fit,” said Gilkey. “Working closelywith Aztec CEO Fran Lopez, Level One Bank was able to seamlessly provide the company with the financial resources necessary to remain viable and chart a future course, which included expansion of its business plan, toward a successful outcome.”

Today, Aztek continues to operate and thrive – an important industry manufacturer and area employer.

“Working with the USDA for Aztek has been quite a rewarding experience,” added Gilkey. “Since that time, we have utilized our contacts at the USDA further to assist in financially supporting a refinancing package to an additional automotive supplier.”

Gilkey, a resident of Troy has been an executive with Level One Bank since 2008.

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