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EDA announces $23 million for 2019 Regional Innovation Strategies cohort

July 25, 2019

The U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) announced Regional Innovation Strategies awards — i6 Challenge and Seed Fund Support — to 44 organizations. Those awards are worth $23.5 million in federal funding matched by $26 million from a variety of private and public sector sources for nearly $50 million for projects to support entrepreneurship and innovation in 28 states and two territories. SSTI members receiving awards include BioSTL, Launch Tennessee, Epicenter Memphis, Research Foundation of SUNY, and VertueLab.  

These new awardees will be working to expand on the RIS program’s already-impressive impacts. These include more than 4,000 companies assisted, supporting the launch of 1,600 new products and $19 million invested in companies, per EDA.

Congress funded the program at $23.5 million for FY 2019, marking the fourth straight year of increased funding. SSTI’s Innovation Advocacy Council has been actively involved in supporting the program, including these appropriations. Budgets are not yet final for FY 2020, but the House approved $30 million for RIS in its appropriations bill.

Organizations interested in the RIS program can find information on each award cycle at ssti.org within our webinar library. EDA’s website also lists summaries of each awardee since the first cycle in 2014.

The map below shows RIS awardees from 2014-2019.