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Governor Ivey announces that Innovate Alabama awards nearly $98 Million to support Alabama small businesses

Governor Ivey announces that Innovate Alabama awards nearly $98 Million to support Alabama small businesses

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey (R) announced on Tuesday that Innovate Alabama is set to receive nearly $98 million to continue its support of Alabama small businesses.

"As Alabama continues to signal that it's open for business, it is crucial that we continue to contribute to the growth of the state's economy through our small businesses," said Gov. Ivey. "This is a sector that has played a pivotal role in defining Alabama's history. With the SSBCI program, we will demonstrate to both investors and business owners that Alabama represents a sound investment opportunity."

Proponents argue that Innovate Alabama awards are fueling the state's powerful ecosystem of entrepreneurs. Critics dismiss these efforts and other incentives as picking the winners and losers in the Alabama economy.

The dual-component program, LendAL and InvestAL, will finance loan and venture capital initiatives intended to enhance lender and investor confidence in Alabama and infuse capital directly into the businesses of the state's startup founders and small business owners.

The funding is made possible based on Act 2024-74, a piece of legislation passed through the Alabama State Legislature earlier this month and signed into law by Governor Ivey.

Innovate Alabama is Alabama's first statewide public-private partnership focused on entrepreneurship, technology and innovation with a mission to help innovators grow roots here in Alabama. Innovate Alabama was established to implement the initiatives and recommendations set forth in the Alabama Innovation Commission's report.

"The SSBCI program will be a catalyst for our state's entrepreneurial ecosystem, establishing an evergreen fund to improve access to capital for Alabama small businesses and entrepreneurs," said Innovate Alabama CEO Cynthia Crutchfield. "With the advent of this program, we're welcoming a new era for entrepreneurs in Alabama. I'm eager to witness the lasting benefits of the investment in the state, including the stimulation of a self-sustaining, durable investment landscape."

The funding is the largest small business funding program the state has seen, is made available by the U.S. Department of the Treasury State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI). The SSBCI allocation has been made possible through the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.


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