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(Janesville, WI) Mike Mathews, Janesville Innovation Center

Janesville Innovation, Inc. (JII) has been awarded a $40,000 grant from the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) to help fund the organization’s efforts to advance the climate for entrepreneurship and small business through the Rock County Entrepreneurial Business Development Program (RCEBD).

Janesville Innovation, Inc. is one of 9 Wisconsin organizations to receive a grant under WEDC’s 2019 Entrepreneurship Support program, which will build-upon the area’s ecosystem by providing customized, consultative services. Nearly $500,000 in matching grants were awarded statewide.

“WEDC congratulates Janesville Innovation, Inc. for being among the recipients of this grant, which enables organizations throughout the state to provide more resources to support their local entrepreneurial communities,” said Mark R. Hogan, Secretary and CEO of WEDC, the state’s lead economic development organization. “Through this program, we are supporting local and regional organizations that understand the unique needs of their communities and can provide key resources to foster a statewide culture that celebrates and encourages entrepreneurs to build successful businesses.”


According to James Otterstein, Rock County Economic Development Manager, the local network of economic development organizations and their partnering service providers have been experiencing a consistent flow of requests from emerging entrepreneurs, as well as existing small businesses.


“Over the past three years, we have leveraged the services of multiple organizations – such as the Janesville Innovation Center (JIC) and Irontek – and thanks to the support of the WEDC grant, we can continue to enhance RCEBD’s offerings,” said Otterstein.


Barry Brandt, Janesville Innovation, Inc. Board President stated that, “While we have a good pulse on the growing entrepreneurial and small business activity in Rock County, it’s difficult to provide the levels of required services with limited financial resources. With a solid foundation already in place, we look forward to leveraging this WEDC grant with local public/private funding to increase our collaborative efforts; sharpen our focus; and expand our services to a larger constituency base.”

Other 2019 grant recipients include: BrightStar Wisconsin Foundation of Milwaukee; Oconto County Economic Development Corporation of Oconto; Green County Economic Development Corporation of Monroe; Couleecap Inc.of Westby; Indianhead Community Action Agency of Ladysmith; Concordia University of Mequon; UW Health Innovation Hub of Madison; and Western Dairyland Economic Opportunity Council Inc. of Eau Claire.

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About Janesville Innovation, Inc.

Janesville Innovation Inc. (JII) is a regional, 501(c) (3) corporation that oversees the Janesville Innovation Center (JIC); and the extensive management, mentoring and business assistance services provided to JIC tenants. The purpose of JII is to provide entrepreneurial and small business development opportunities by offering a supportive infrastructure, education, training and mentorship environment. Additionally, JII facilitates the establishment of value-added relationships that encourage technological innovation, job generation and the continual repositioning of the area’s economy. 

About the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation

The Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) leads economic development efforts for the state by advancing and maximizing opportunities in Wisconsin for businesses, communities and people to thrive in a globally competitive environment. Working with more than 600 regional and local partners, WEDC develops and delivers solutions representative of a highly responsive and coordinated economic development network.  

 

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