HARRISBURG — Gov. Tom Wolf on Tuesday announced that $246.8 million in American Rescue Plan funding has been awarded to local economic development partners through the State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI). The funds will be used to make direct equity investments and loans to small businesses to spur success and job creation opportunities across the commonwealth.
“The dollars awarded today will help businesses that are small, socially and economically disadvantaged, and those in the innovation and technology sector grow and thrive,” Gov. Wolf said in press release announcing the award. “This funding aligns perfectly with my continued commitment to support businesses in Pennsylvania.”
The Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) is responsible for distributing the funds to eligible economic development partners who will administer the funding to qualifying businesses.
Funding was distributed equitably across the commonwealth, taking population data and the organizations serving each county into consideration to ensure that eligible businesses — in all 67 counties across Pennsylvania — will have access to either loans or equity investments, according to the press release.
Among the recipients are seven organizations in the region in two programs.
The Direct Venture Investment program provides funding to economic development organizations in the commonwealth to provide seed and later-stage capital for existing and emerging companies involved in the development and commercialization of technologically advanced products and processes. Nearly $123 million in Direct Venture Investment funding has been awarded to a total of seven organizations, including:
• Ben Franklin Technology Partners Central & Northern Pennsylvania — $19,678,479• Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Northeastern Pennsylvania — $19,678,479• Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Southeastern Pennsylvania — $19,678,479• BioAdvance (Biotechnology Greenhouse Corporation of Southeastern Pennsylvania) — $14,758,859
The Revolving Loan Fund program provides funding to economic development organizations to create or recapitalize revolving loan funds to support financing for Pennsylvania small businesses. More than $123.8 million in Revolving Loan Funds has been awarded to a total of 21 organizations including:
• Chester County Economic Development Council — $20,000,000• Montgomery County Redevelopment Authority — $2,000,000
Capital programs administered by economic development partners are scheduled to be open by Oct. 17. Small businesses will apply for funding through their economic development organizations.
For more information about SSBCI funding, visit the Department of Community and Economic Development website, https://dced.pa.gov/.