CT Next, the state’s innovation ecosystem created by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, announced the winners of its first round of funding to bolster organizations that help entrepreneurs.
A total $5 million was awarded to 20 organizations, including the incubators Stamford Innovation Center and Danbury Hackerspace, b:Hive – a co-working space in Bridgeport – and the Business Council of Fairfield County. The grants are intended to support pathways for entrepreneurs to seek advice, mentorship and funding, as well as develop a robust community of innovation.
The funding was awarded by Connecticut Innovations, the state’s quasi-public financing entity, designed to help companies start and grow in Connecticut.
“In its first year of execution, CT Next has proven a valuable resource to entrepreneurs,” said Claire Leonardi, CI CEO, in a press release. “As the ecosystem continues to evolve, we would like to offer entrepreneurs a broader range of resources tailored to their needs. These resources will help them grow and scale their businesses by providing them with access to talent, industry expertise, services co-working spaces and a growing, vibrant entrepreneurial community.”
In its first year, CT NEXT networks assisted more than 500 companies access tools for growth. In addition to its first major round of funding, officials plans to continue evaluating other proposals for possible funding in the future.
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