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OEDIT & Colorado Venture Capital Authority allocate $9M for rural startups

Post by InnovatioNews on September 13

Colorado’s Office of Economic Growth and International Trade (OEDIT), in partnership with the Colorado Venture Capital Authority (CVCA), is allocating $9 million (plus up to an additional $3 million option) for a new investment fund that will provide seed and early-stage investment capital and/or debt to qualified rural businesses in the state.

The new fund was created to stimulate and support innovation and economic growth in rural Colorado counties that may have less access to investment resources.

Potential industries include value added agriculture, advanced manufacturing, education, health and wellness, tourism and outdoor recreation, energy natural resources, clean tech and technology and information, and others.

“Colorado represents a vibrant model for entrepreneurship and innovation,” said Gov. John Hickenlooper.

“Our goal is to extend that influence to more rural counties with an investment fund dedicated to their specific growth needs.”

Businesses located in more than 54 counties in the state are eligible to receive funding from the new Rural Fund, including Baca, Chaffee, Delta, La Plata, Lincoln, Moffat, Rio Grande, Summit, and Yuma.

“These rural counties already provide exceptional economic advantages including an educated and motivated workforce, locations with global access, and a collaborative business environment,” said Roni Wisdom, Rio Grande County administrator and CVCA board member.

“Access to investment funds will help accelerate growth and innovation.”

OEDIT and CVCA are seeking qualified candidates to manage the fund, via an RFP process. The selected fund manager will play a significant role in the expansion of rural economic initiatives and have the opportunity to support and influence industries key to Colorado’s economic growth.

Qualified candidates and firms can access the Rural Fund Manager RFP on the state’s website.The deadline for responses is Nov. 1.

Final candidates will be reviewed by the CVCA with a winning candidate to be selected by Jan. 2, 2018.

Click here for more information about Colorado’s Rural Fund or to download the Fund Manager RFP.