CI Announces Approval of Plan to Deploy $250 Million to Entrepreneurs

Earlier this month, Connecticut Innovations announced the board approval of a plan to match state funding over the next 5 years in a way which expands existing programs for entrepreneurs, while also recruiting out-of-state startups. The plan calls for $50 million to be dispersed over the course of the next 5 years in the following ways:

  • $4 million per year for CI’s pre-seed program, which offers loans to support the formation of new Connecticut technology companies
  • $22 million per year for seed stage and Series A investments, which help entrepreneurs grow existing businesses, and for follow-on investments in CI portfolio companies.
  • $6.5 million per year for a newly developed loan program, which provides growth and working capital for technology companies.
  • $7 million per year for the aggressive recruitment of emerging technology companies nationally and internationally. CI plans to work with the Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) and other state agencies to design a relocation incentive package, similar to the governor’s “First Five” initiative.
  • $4 million per year to help Connecticut companies secure more of the federal Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) funds each year, as well as increase industry partnerships and the state’s technology talent pipeline.
  • $4.8 million per year to (1) establish three technology business accelerator hubs, which will provide support services to startups, (2) launch a university-based proof of concept center and (3) create a corporate technology transfer initiative.

In a recent post, we acknowledged how startups can play a strong role in remedying the unemployment issue that the state has been facing. In their latest press release, CI reports that over the past 3 years, their investments have “leveraged $74 million in private capital investments for Connecticut companies”. This activity, they claim adds, on average, 1,600 jobs annually to the state of CT.

Over to You: Is CI’s plan what the state needs in order to get back on the right track? What do you think?

About Michael Romano

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