Christine Lantinen

Christine Lantinen, owner of Maud Borup candies and gifts, was a 10-year veteran of the Army and Target who led sales at a food-gift company when she lost her job because the owner couldn’t pay her commission-based compensation.
Lantinen, tired of working for others, in 2005 bought then-struggling Maud Borup. She couldn’t qualify for a bank loan, so a friend loaned her money.
In May, Lantinen will be recognized with other state winners as Minnesota’s Small Business Person of the Year by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), which insures select small-business loans made by commercial lenders.
Lantinen, who grew up on a farm near Le Center, has built Maud Borup into a 100-plus employee, multi-million revenue company making candy and other food gifts for specialty and mass retailers. 
Maud Borup, founded in St. Paul 112 years ago, is based in Plymouth. It operates an expanded manufacturing facility in Le Center that is powered by renewable energy.
‘’The SBA was pivotal in helping Maud Borup gain momentum when I first bought the brand,’’ Christine Lantinen said in a prepared statement. “The SBA-backed loans helped build the infrastructure that laid the foundation for our exponential growth. With so many incredible small businesses in Minnesota, being selected for this award is truly humbling.”
The Small Business Person of the Year is selected based on growth in sales or unit volume, increase in employees, financial strength, innovativeness of product or service and evidence of contributions to community-oriented projects. 
 “The SBA is committed to helping small businesses succeed and we’re excited to have been a part of Christine’s journey to grow Maud Borup,” said Nancy J. Libersky, district director of the SBA’s Minnesota District Office.
Other Minnesota SBA award winners include:
Niles Deneen Pottery of St. Paul
Annissa Keys, founder of Arubah Emotional Health Services of Minneapolis
Darcy Johnson of Conger Meat Co.
More information about the May 10 Minnesota awards ceremony:

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