The state of Iowa is giving one of the nation’s largest financial institutions a $10 million forgivable loan, the first award made from the state’s new Iowa Values Fund. Governor Tom Vilsack lobbied legislators for the Iowa Values Fund, and one of the prospects cited was expansion of the northwest Iowa animal genetics firm TransOva, not the Wells Fargo expansion in the Des Moines area that’s getting the 10 million. Vilsack denies TransOva was a “trojan horse” designed to get legislators to approve the fund. Vilsack says the Values Fund is not about one company, but about one state and transforming Iowa’s economy. Hematech, a partner of TransOva, recently announced it would expand in South Dakota rather than Iowa. Vilsack says TransOva has a number of potential customers and opportunities beyond Hematech. Vilsack says the state is focusing on TransOva. He says the state has asked TransOva to present a phased-in expansion project to the Iowa Values board, and Vilsack expects TransOva will get a forgivable loan.
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