Lamont Announces Federal Approval of Connecticut’s Plan To Support Entrepreneurs and Small Businesses Growth With COVID Recovery Funding

Governor Ned Lamont today announced that the U.S. Treasury Department has approved the State of Connecticut’s plan to deploy up to $119.5 million in funding through the American Rescue Plan Act’s (ARPA) State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI).

Connecticut’s SSBCI program will support underserved entrepreneurs across the state through a variety of loan and equity programs designed to spur small business growth, create jobs, promote equity, and catalyze green technologies.

“We are thrilled to accept SSBCI funding from Treasury and get it into the hands of small businesses, which are at the heart of Connecticut’s strong economy,” Governor Lamont said. “I thank the Biden administration and Connecticut’s Congressional delegation for providing this funding through ARPA to accelerate our COVID recovery.”

This new federal support will enable the launch of two initiatives central to the overarching Governor’s Economic Development Action Plan, a strategic package of initiatives undertaken in 2021 that totals more than $600 million over five years that will result in a projected 80,000 new jobs.

SSBCI funds will be administered by Connecticut Innovations, the state’s strategic venture capital arm and leading source of financing and ongoing support for innovative, growing companies.

With this capitalization, Connecticut Innovations will launch two new funds:

  • The Connecticut Future Fund, supporting entrepreneurs from underserved and diverse backgrounds who lead small businesses in a variety of sectors; and
  • The ClimateTech (CT) Fund, supporting early-stage businesses with a focus on clean energy, environmentally safe manufacturing, and climate resiliency.

Both of these new funds will be supplemented with existing Connecticut Innovations funds. Other SSBCI funds will support existing Connecticut Innovations programs, such as initiatives to support bioscience and advanced manufacturing businesses. Connecticut Innovation’s investments will include early-stage venture debt and equity investments.

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