COVID-19 Resources ▸▸

Turning Innovation Into Enterprise


Grants Expand Resources for Small Biz Throughout West Virginia

The U.S. Small Business Administration recently awarded two West Virginia programs that will expand SBA Logoresources for individuals interested in starting or growing a small business.

West Virginia University has been awarded a grant to host a Women’s Business Center on campus. The grant will provide up to $150,000 annually, administered by the WVU Research Corporation, to assist women in starting and growing small businesses. To learn more, click here.

Eastern WV Community and Technical College, along with its student-run store and new business incubator – known as the New Biz Launchpad – has received a $50,000 grant to facilitate entrepreneurism and economic growth among students and start-ups in the Eastern Panhandle.  To learn more, click here.

In addition, several recent grant awards were made from the Partnerships for Opportunity & Workforce & Economic Revitalization (POWER) program that support small business growth and entrepreneurs, including:

  • $967,500 ARC grant to the New River Gorge Regional Development Authority in Beckley, WV for the New River Gorge Region – Developing an Entrepreneurial Economy ARC funds will be used to establish a technical assistance support program — which will assist start-up businesses with hands-on technical aspects of their operations — and to hire social enterprise and region-wide business coaches. The project will yield 15 new businesses, improve 294 existing businesses, and create 225 new small-business jobs.
  • $2,285,049 EDA grant to Upshur County Development Authority in Buckhannon, WV, for the Upshur County Knowledge and Innovation Business Center. This project consists of the construction of the new Business Center on property donated by the City of Buckhannon, which will host a small business development center to be managed by the Upshur County Development Authority. Small business development support services will be targeted to IT and other technology-based business interests. The Center will also provide flex-office and incubator space. Broadband access will be available at the facility as a result of a privately-funded initiative to address the current lack of broadband access in Upshur County.  One technology company has already committed to locating in this facility.  The project will create and retain 78 jobs and leverage $8,500,000 in additional investment

Other POWER grants announced include:

  • $1,870,000 to the Coalfield Development Corporation in Wayne for the Appalachian Social Entrepreneurship Investment Strategy.
  • $1,250,000 to the Natural Capital Investment Fund, Inc. in Shepherdstown for the Growing Triple Bottom Line Small Businesses in Coal Impacted Communities in Central Appalachia project.
  • $1,500,000 to the Bluewell Public Service District in Bluefield for the Mercer County Regional Airport Development and Diversification Initiative.
  • $1,372,275 to the Hatfield McCoy Regional Recreation Authority in Man for the Southern Coalfields Sustainable Tourism & Entrepreneurship Program.
  • $2,196,450 to the Consortium for Entrepreneurship Education in Charleston for the EntreEd K-14: Every Student, Every Year project.
  • $622,500 to the Randolph County Development Authority in Elkins for the Hardwood Cluster Manufacturing Expansion Project.
  • $200,000 for development of a strategic plan for the Hobet surface mine site in Boone and Lincoln counties.
  • $10,000 to the EdVenture Group to provide grant-writing assistance to apply for a POWER Implementation grant to train displaced workers in computer coding and other IT skills.
  • $250,000 EDA grant to the Advantage Valley, Incorporated (AVI) in Huntington, WV for the AVI Site Development and Small Business Feasibility Study.

To learn more about the POWER grants, click here.