The United States Economic Development Agency Regional Innovations Strategies program will provide $194,672 for the New River Gorge Regional Development Authority.
The funding will support the Country Roads Access Network, an initiative that provides capital investment for early-stage businesses and an educational component designed to spur entrepreneurism and drive economic growth in southern West Virginia.
“Securing funding from the U.S. EDA RIS Seed Fund Support initiative is an exciting and innovative approach to entrepreneurial capital access for the state of West Virginia,” NRGRDA Director of Business Development Jina Belcher said in a media release. “The development of Country Roads Angel Network will provide early stage, risk capital and educational resources to both entrepreneurs served by NRGRDA’s WV Hive Network initiative as well as other early-stage, innovation-based companies throughout the New River Gorge region and West Virginia.”
“I am glad to see the EDA is investing in West Virginia. This funding will assist the NRGRDA in leveraging $2 million in private investments through CRAN,” Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., said in the release. “West Virginia is home to many entrepreneurs, and this funding will support the commercialization of their ideas or will help a small business scale-up – which leads to job creation and a boost to our economy. As a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, I will continue to fight for funding that strengthens our economy and supports West Virginians and their goals.”