Continued growth

Country Financial representative Ben Riches recently purchased the Barnard Mortuary on North Union Avenue in Fergus Falls as he continues to expand his business.

Greater Fergus Falls (GFF) is pleased to announce the expansion and relocation of a Country Financial office in Downtown Fergus Falls. Financial representative Brian Riches recently purchased Barnard Mortuary at 119 N. Union Ave., to preserve a local historic property and to grow his business. Riches hopes this move will increase visibility and hire new staff to expand products and services.

“Purchasing your own building is both exciting and scary,” Riches said. “There are so many pieces to the puzzle, but it was great to have local resources and people to help along the way. GFF is helpful in showing you the many different programs that are out there so you can try to figure out which one works best for you.”

Riches spent some time doing market research in Fergus Falls prior to relocating. During that time, he met with several community members and business representatives who left lasting impressions. Three years ago he made the decision to move his business and chose Fergus Falls. He heard that Fergus Falls had a welcoming business community and found that to be true after the move. The community has offered him the opportunity to grow and expand his business. 

“We are excited to help another existing business expand in our community,” GFF CEO Annie Deckert said. “Partnering with the city of Fergus Falls to utilize their MIF lending program was crucial to make this expansion happen”. Riches was able to secure $52,000 in funding from a city loan pool, to assist with the purchase and renovation of the building.

In just three years, Riches went from leasing an office space to owning his own commercial property to accommodate for exponential growth. Whether it is finding suitable property or leveraging financial resources, GFF looks forward to helping other businesses relocate and expand in Fergus Falls. To learn more, visit

"Helping businesses expand and hire is the best use of the city of Fergus Falls' Minnesota Investment Fund (MIF) dollars, a program we are fortunate to administer as a useful tool in the city's development toolkit,” Fergus Falls Community Development manager Klara Beck stated. “We look forward to seeing Mr. Riches' success in downtown Fergus Falls!”


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