Empowering Black Entrepreneurs Pilot Business Accelerator

Empowering Black Entrepreneurs Pilot Business Accelerator

The Empowering Black Entrepreneurs (EBE) Business Accelerator Pilot Program explores and addresses critical opportunities and challenges within the Black business community, emphasizing business sustainability, survival, and recovery, particularly in the post-COVID-19 business environment. The program offers a unique opportunity for Black-owned businesses to receive the necessary resources and mentorship to scale their operations. The accelerator program will provide pragmatic business knowledge, from brand development to effective sales strategies and financial management.

  • Statewide Project Theme: Entrepreneurial Activities
  • Region 6 Priority Industry Cluster: Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services
  • GO Virginia Request: $98,438.00
  • Match: $99,738.00
  • Source of Match: Virginia Black Chamber of Commerce, Virginia Black Business Directory
  • Project Type: Planning Grant
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Region 6 Entrepreneurial Ecosystem Initiative

Region 6 Entrepreneurial Ecosystem Initiative

The Rivers Region Entrepreneurial Ecosystem Council will conduct the GO Virginia Region 6 Regional Entrepreneurial Initiative (REI).

  • Statewide Project Theme: Entrepreneurial Activities
  • Region 6 Priority Industry Cluster: Aquaculture / Seafood / Commercial Fishing / Marine Industries; Forestry / Wood Products / Paper; Manufacturing; Distribution/logistics; Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services; Information/Data Centers
  • GO Virginia Request: $300,000.00
  • Match: $150,000.00
  • Source of Match: Stafford County Economic Development Authority, King George Economic Development Authority, Germanna Community College, City of Fredericksburg Economic Development Authority, Jamie Scully, Fredericksburg Regional Alliance 
  • Project Type: Planning Grant
  • Localities: Stafford County, City of Fredericksburg, King George County
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Stafford County Expanding Smart Community Tech Feasibility Study

Stafford County Expanding Smart Community Tech Feasibility Study

The Stafford County Economic Development Authority will conduct a feasibility study to identify opportunities to expand the existing Smart Technology Entrepreneurial testbed into rural localities across GO Virginia Region 6. This project will explore potential environmental management, water, stormwater, public safety, traffic and other community issues that could be solved using smart technologies. In addition, it will explore strategies to apply smart technology solutions to existing businesses and develop and/or attract smart technology businesses to the region.

  • Statewide Project Theme: Entrepreneurial Activities
  • Region 6 Priority Industry Cluster:  Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services
  • GO Virginia Request: $96,250.00
  • Match: $66,340.00
  • Source of Match: Stafford County, Stafford County Economic Development Authority, Middlesex County, Colonial Beach, RIoT
  • Project Type: Planning Grant
  • Localities: Stafford County, Town of Colonial Beach, Middlesex County
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Young Entrepreneurs Program

Young Entrepreneurs Program

King George Young Entrepreneurs Project is aimed to encourage and support the development of prospective young entrepreneurs in the county and in one or two other Northern Neck communities. The project would begin by documenting existing resources available to new startups and young entrepreneurs.

  • Statewide Project Theme: Entrepreneurial Activities
  • Region 6 Priority Industry Cluster:  Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services
  • GO Virginia Request: $98,000
  • Match: $90,272
  • Source of Match: King George County Economic Development & Tourism, King George County EDA, King George County Schools, Gloucester County Schools, and Gloucester County Department of Economic Development.
  • Project Type: ECB
  • Localities: King George County and Gloucester County
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RIoT Pre-Accelerator Program

RIoT Pre-Accelerator Program

The pre-accelerator program supports idea stage entrepreneurs with validating a market, establishing foundational business principles, and incorporating emerging technologies. The pre-accelerator includes bi-weekly in-person group workshops at the Stafford Smart Community Testbed with an option for virtual participation for those who prefer to join online. Content includes technology baselining, value proposition development, business fundamentals, and customer discovery and pipelining. Each idea-stage entrepreneur also receives bi-weekly 1-on-1 coaching, personalized to their specific needs. Participants exit the program with a clear understanding of next steps for establishing a business around a validated market opportunity. The expectation is that 60+% of pre-accelerator participants to become competitive RAP applicants at the completion of the pre-accelerator.

  • Statewide Project Theme: Entrepreneurial Activities
  • Region 6 Priority Industry Cluster: Information/Data Centers, Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services
  • GO Virginia Request: $96,807.00
  • Match: $80,791.00
  • Source of Match: RIoT, Stafford EDA
  • Project Type: Implementation
  • Localities: City of Fredericksburg, King George County, Stafford County
  • How does this project create higher-paying jobs? This project creates higher paying jobs by supporting new businesses who will then hire new employees. Our target is an average salary of $75k per job created. Most of the jobs created will be technology and software positions, which regularly command salaries in excess of $100,000.
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Launching a Coastal Resilience and Adaptation Economy

Launching a Coastal Resilience and Adaptation Economy

The Coastal Resilience and Adaptation Economy initiative takes a two-pronged approach to laying the foundation of an innovation ecosystem that will create a new, long-term, high-paying economic industry cluster.

The approach: 1) Builds resilience entrepreneurship through RISE’s proven business plan competition and accelerator services, including a product performance validation in Region 6’s network of real-world R&D test sites (i.e. Resilience Innovation Center) as an expansion of the Hampton Roads resilience living laboratory; and 2) Forms a multi-stakeholder, business-focused Region 5-6 Consortium to engage the broader business community in education about the risks and economic impacts of sea level rise, and builds capacity for the adoption of resilient practices. Aligning with both Region’s Growth & Diversification Plans, this initiative builds critical pathways and avenues for collaboration between the two regions and rural and urban economies. Further, as this sector grows, all other sectors are buoyed by the increased regional resilience to flooding, storms, and other stressors impacting coastal Virginia.

The project team includes Virginia Sea Grant (VASG, 7- university coalition, Region 6, Lead); RISE (non-profit, Region 5); Middle Peninsula Chesapeake Bay Public Access Authority (PAA, local government, Region 6); and Old Dominion University (ODU, Region 5), GO Virginia funds will be used to support contract for services with selected RISE competition winners, stipends for graduate students, development of the consortium, and planning and assessment of the public access sites for demonstration projects.

  • Statewide Project Theme: Entrepreneurial Activities/Workforce Development
  • Region 6 Priority Industry Cluster: Aquaculture / Seafood / Commercial Fishing / Marine Industries
  • GO Virginia Request: $2,937,163
  • Match: $3,696,411
  • Source of Match: MPCBPAA, VT, ODU, VASG, Localities
  • Project Type: Statewide Competitive
  • Localities: Region 5 and Region 6
  • How does this project create higher-paying jobs? This project creates higher-paying jobs by exploring new ways to combat sea-level rise and create an industry around this business.
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Establishing a RIoT Accelerator Program in the Rappahannock Regional Entrepreneur Ecosystem

Establishing a RIoT Accelerator Program in the Rappahannock Regional Entrepreneur Ecosystem

This project will utilize GO Virginia funds to expand entrepreneurial support programs in the Rappahannock Region (Rapp Region). These programs include the proven RIoT Accelerator Program (RAP) and additional community-focused programming across the Rapp-Region, housed in the technology-based Virginia Smart Community Testbed in Stafford. The Testbed is an initiative spearheaded by the Center for Innovative Technology (CIT) and Stafford to foster and create new Smart Technologies and attract the entrepreneurs that develop them in Virginia. In partnership with CIT, GO Virginia will seed fund a Technology Specialist for the Testbed. The Specialist will coordinate entrepreneurial opportunities in the Testbed and seed funds to foster pilot project for entrepreneurs. Together with the local RIoT VA-RAP Lead, they will play an integral part in the project. The VA-RAP Lead works with entrepreneurs around their entire business, including revenue, hiring and capital growth while the Tech Specialist advises on the technology-side and integrating entrepreneurs into pilot projects or with other tech companies connected to the Testbed. Go Virginia funds will be used to pay for a portion of salaries, equipment, outreach, and workshops.

  • Statewide Project Theme: Entrepreneurial Activities
  • Region 6 Priority Industry Cluster: Information/Data Centers and Professional/Scientific/Technical Services
  • GO Virginia Request: $215,000
  • Match: $204,500
  • Source of Match: Stafford County (cash & in-kind); City of Fred (in-kind); King George County (cash & in-kind); RIOT; CIT
  • Project Type: Implementation
  • Localities: City of Fredericksburg, Caroline, King George, Stafford, Spotsylvania
  • How does this project create higher paying jobs? This project creates higher paying jobs by providing training to companies to grow their businesses in high growth sectors.
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Virginia Sea Grant Resiliency Ecosystem Development

Virginia Sea Grant Resiliency Ecosystem Development

This project initiates a study to complete planning activities toward building a new industry cluster in Virginia, a water management economy that integrates workforce development, research and development, innovation, and commercialization.

  • Statewide Project Theme: Entrepreneurial Activities
  • Region 6 Priority Industry Cluster: Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services
  • GO Virginia Request: $49,996
  • Match: $49,996
  • Source of Match: Middle Peninsula Planning District Commission and Middle Peninsula Alliance
  • Project Type: Enhanced Capacity Building
  • Localities: Essex County, Gloucester County, King and Queen County, Middlesex County, Mathews County, King William County, Town of Tappahannock, Town of Urbanna, and Town of West Point.
  • How does this project create higher paying jobs? This project creates higher paying jobs by understanding the potential economy of water-based activities that could create entrepreneurial innovations.
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Commercial Kitchen at Hull Springs

Commercial Kitchen at Hull Springs

This project proposes a feasibility study for a commercial kitchen located at Longwood Hull Springs in Westmoreland County. Should the results of the study indicate that a commercial kitchen establishment would be feasible in the Northern Neck, the idea is to co-locate the facility in the dining hall at Longwood Hull Springs for food preparation for resident students and faculty members.

  • Statewide Project Theme: Entrepreneurial Activities
  • Region 6 Priority Industry Cluster: Manufacturing
  • GO Virginia Request: $50,000
  • Match: $50,000
  • Source of Match: US Department of Agriculture-Rural Development
  • Project Type: Enhanced Capacity Building
  • Localities: Westmoreland County and Northumberland County
  • How does this project create higher paying jobs? This project creates higher paying jobs by providing understanding the ecosystem in which food manufacturers can operate a commercial kitchen.
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Fredericksburg Region Cyber & Smart Tech Entrepreneurial Development Program

Fredericksburg Region Cyber & Smart Tech Entrepreneurial Development Program

This project initiates a to assess the market demand for a Cyber and Smart Tech Entrepreneur program and the capacity of Stafford County’s Economic Development Authority and Economic Development and Tourism Department to deliver such a program. GO Virginia funds will be utilized for the hiring of a consultant, R!OT, to understand the current ecosystem and plan ways to move it forward.

  • Statewide Project Theme: Entrepreneurial Activities
  • Region 6 Priority Industry Cluster: Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services
  • GO Virginia Request: $97,500
  • Match: $75,000
  • Source of Match: Stafford County EDA, Stafford County Economic Development and Tourism, City of Fredericksburg, and King George County, OST, Inc. R!OT, Cyber Bytes Foundation, UMW Stafford, Germanna Community College, UMW Economic Development Department, and CIT
  • Project Type: Enhanced Capacity Building
  • Localities: Stafford County, City of Fredericksburg, King George County
  • How does this project create higher paying jobs? This project creates higher paying jobs by providing understanding the ecosystem in which cyber entrepreneurs can build and grow in.
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