The McKinney Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) has announced a new Innovation Fund targeted toward tech startups.
Through programs, funding, and support systems, the fund is designed to create opportunities for businesses that wouldn’t traditionally qualify for economic incentives. It also aims to invest in companies with high growth potential; the MEDC said innovators in the tech and startup sector are leading the way for “Economic Development 2.0 organizations.”
“As economies grow, they evolve and our goal is to grow our already impressive startup ecosystem into an innovation corridor,” said Danny Chavez, senior vice president at MEDC, in the fund’s announcement. “It’s time for economic development programs to come into the 21st century, which is one of the main goals of this targeted vertical and our online application capability.”
The Innovation Fund will focus on five primary programs: recruitment, expansion, skills development to help get startups through the investment capital building process, a growth fund targeting one- to two-person startups at the ideation stage, and a tech competition expected to be held this year or next.
Given the tech focus, startups in the following sectors are eligible to apply:
- SaaS and B2B Sales
- Cloud Computing, AI & Data Analytics
- Cybersecurity (Information Management, Info Assurance, Threat-Hunting, etc.)
- Renewable Energy (Internet-based technologies, software or hardware)
- Life Sciences (Internet-based research and technologies)
- Gaming, Electronic, and Digital Arts
“We are extremely focused on high-growth opportunities with this fund,” Peter Tokar, CEO at MEDC, said. “McKinney is perfectly positioned for start-ups and tech entrepreneurs. Our goals is to bring together a critical mass of innovators that will be able to collaborate and grow right here in our city. We know the footprints will start small, and that’s OK. The tallest structures on Earth were built one beam at a time.”
The impetus for creating the Innovation Fund was understanding the startup and high-growth ecosystem is “key in building diversified 21st century economies” according to the MEDC. Along with building and supporting an innovation ecosystem, a secondary goal for the Innovation Fund to drive innovation within MEDC to meet the challenge of a highly competitive business environment and help set McKinney and the North Texas area apart from other competitive markets through enhancing the regional tech ecosystem.
To apply for the Innovation Fund, fill out the online application on the MEDC website.
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