The New Orleans Startup Fund helps secure funding for early-stage local companies. The nonprofit has a portfolio of companies including Golden Leaf Energy (which we wrote about here last week), adverCar, and Kickboard. The most recent company to be added to the portfolio is Zlien, a local business founded in 2007 which handles mechanics lien compliance services for contractors and suppliers. The Startup Fund has closed $450,000 in financing for Zlien.
Founder and CEO Scott Wolfe Jr. said the funds will be used for, “further development of our applications and offerings, increase marketing, and to grow and support our staff.” Zlien has six full-time workers and two part-time workers, with offices in New Orleans, Los Angeles, Seattle, and Beaverton, OR. Wolfe Jr. said the company is doing well and has seen year over year growth since 2009 and revenue has increased 700% since January 2011. In the last month alone, Zlien grew 25%.
According to the press release, Zlien charges a flat fee, which covers filing mechanics liens, fees, and other documents necessary to speed up the process. Liens are filed when a contractor goes unpaid for work. If the owner defaults on the payment after Zlien serves the papers, the property will be sold by a court to help pay off debts. The company makes this process simple and easy for contractors and suppliers by handling all the grunt work.
As for the future of Zlien, Wolfe Jr. says they, “really believe in the problem we’re solving for the construction industry. This deal is exciting because it supports Zlien to continue pushing forward on developing these solutions aggressively, and allows the company to connect with more in the industry.” The New Orleans Startup Fund’s goal is to create jobs and stimulate the economy in the city, both of which can be marked as a success by adding Zlien to their portfolio.