Regional business loan program helps Aqua Traction of North Dakota expand

A Mandan-based marine supply business is now expanding to meet growing demand thanks to a regional business loan provided through Lewis & Clark Development Group.

Aqua Traction of North Dakota recently received funding through the IRP Mandan Fund, one of several regional business loan funds offered through Lewis & Clark Regional Development Council (RDC). 

Lewis & Clark RDC provides economic development and commercial loans for businesses located in Burleigh, Emmons, Grant, Kidder, McLean, Mercer, Morton, Oliver, Sheridan, and Sioux counties. Lewis & Clark RDC is part of Lewis & Clark Development Group.

With the loan, Aqua Traction of North Dakota purchased its new property, located at 3950 21st Street SE in Mandan, which will allow owners Tanner Ouellette and Kade Lynch to build out their expanded working area.

According to Matt Burthold, LCD Group Commercial Lending Director, funds provided through the IRP Mandan Fund were used to finance the local match for the Bank of North Dakota’s Flex PACE interest buydown program. The financing package was assembled by Aqua Traction’s lender, Chris Venneman of Cornerstone Bank of Dickinson.

“It’s a textbook example of how regional loan programs work with the small business and its lender to give a greater opportunity for success,” says Burthold. “In this case, the IRP Mandan Fund filled a gap and complemented the Flex PACE program. We worked with the lender to put everything together for Tanner and Kade.”

Demand from Across North Dakota Fueled Need for Expansion

Ouellette and Lynch started Aqua Traction of North Dakota in August 2020. The business specializes in selling and designing polyethylene-based foam flooring for boats and icehouses. The popularity of their products and services have brought in clients from across North Dakota, necessitating the need to move beyond their current undersized location. 

“The IRP Mandan Fund made expansion less of a stress,” says Ouellette. “This loan allows us to not only have the proper facility to effectively serve our clients, it also allows us to have the right people in the right places to provide great service.”

Ouellette says they currently have three full-time employees but now expect they’ll be able to bring on one or two more qualified full-time workers. 

“Keeping businesses in Mandan and creating more jobs is exactly why the IRP Mandan program exists,” observes Burthold. 

Both Ouellette and Lynch feel a connection to the Mandan community. 

“We really want to thank the community for their support. We will continue to work as hard as possible to give back to our clients and the community as much as we are able,” promise Ouellette.

Learn More: Click here for more information about LCD Group’s regional business loan programs.

Support Local: Visit Aqua Traction of North Dakota’s Facebook page to see the range of products and services the business offers.

Put LCD Group’s Expertise to Work for You: LCD Group’s Commercial Lending Director Matt Burthold can help your small business. Contact Matt today at (701) 667-7601 or at

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