Growing up, Kris Terp’s family all worked in the car business. He chose a different career path, working in software development and as an entrepreneur. However, he noticed the inefficient way car dealerships and repair shops managed the myriad of keys for their vehicles. They were using simple peg boards, lockers, and dry erase markers to track sets of keys. He thought he could apply his programming skills and knowledge of the car business to find a better way to track keys.
From 1992-1997, he wrote and revised software that would control secure key boxes, capable of tracking when each set was checked out, replaced, and by who. He developed systems for several local car dealerships and quickly expanded nationwide. Today the company he started is known as 1Micro and is based in Waconia.
As 1Micro took off, he noticed his big bank had reduced his line of credit from $250,000 to just $25,000 during the Great Recession. While he wasn’t using it, the fact that it had been reduced without even a call from a banker troubled him. Kris says that from 2008 to 2016, he never even spoke with his business banker, even as his business was growing.
After some staff changes at the big bank that saw Kris’s previous banker reassigned to a new role, Rich Gove reached out.
Rich (who has been with North American Banking Company since 2018 but had been working at Kris’s big bank) talked to Kris about how well 1Micro was doing and how the bank could help him continue his success. Kris remembers thinking “this guy Rich Gove is very proactive.”
When Rich came to North American Banking Company, he contacted Kris. Kris told him he had been working with his big bank for over a year on a new loan and was getting increasingly frustrated with how long it was taking.
Rich explained that one of the benefits of working at a community bank is he has access to the decision makers, who are based in Minnesota and know this market well. “In what had been a yearlong process at my big bank, I was able to get done in about a month with Rich and the team at North American Banking Company,” says Kris.
As 1Micro continues to grow, he knows having a banker like Rich and a bank like North American Banking Company is an asset to his business. “Rich is available for all of my questions and takes the time to understand my business. It’s been a great relationship!”