Imagine yourself as a student in a science classroom. Your textbook is so compelling; it literally draws you inside. It seems to be alive, allowing you to change your surroundings and explore your subject in 3-D. While this concept sounds like a sci-fi movie, it’s actually possible through science software from a company called Simulation Curriculum.
As its name implies, Simulation Curriculum develops and publishes interactive software and curriculum used by K-12 schools as well as colleges worldwide. Its mission is get students excited about the sciences by placing them in the middle of an environment – such as the cosmos – and allowing them to explore. The company’s flagship product, a desktop planetarium simulator known as Starry Night, is used by hundreds of thousands of students in classrooms everywhere.
Michael Goodman, co-founder of Simulation Curriculum, worked with the Starry Night line of products when it was with its former parent company, a large corporation known as Imaginova. For Michael, Starry Night was always more than simply products. His vision was – and continues to be – to expand and improve the powerful interactive learning tool. His passion led him to acquiring the Starry Night Education division from Imaginova.
“It was a complex road to decoupling the product line from the corporation, both legally and financially,” Michael says. “Most banks didn’t seem to offer anything beyond the ordinary in terms of adding value to the process.” However, he found a team at Alerus Financial that understood and came to share his vision. Additionally, he says, “their innovative ideas helped make the process go more smoothly and quickly.”
Among the complexities in buying the Starry Night product line was the fact that Michael’s company would also employ the development arm of the business, which is located in Canada. “That added an entire new layer of complexity. But it was no problem for the Alerus team,” he says. “They worked through all the aspects and challenges of multinational locations and payrolls.”
Michael is extremely grateful to Alerus Financial for its contribution to his business. To show his appreciation, he often goes out of his way to pass along his bankers’ names to his colleagues and friends.
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