NH Division of Economic Development
YouTube Facebook Twitter Twitter
Why New Hampshire Move Start Grow About Us

Archive for January, 2012

Seventh Annual Small Business Day Slated for 1/31

Monday, January 9th, 2012

Strategies for securing business financing, tips for how to do business with the state, a look at this year’s top policy issues from the state’s top legislators and more will be the focus of the Business and Industry Association’s 7th Annual Small Business Day at the State House event to be held Jan. 31 at the Holiday Inn, Concord from 7:30 to 11:30 a.m.

The annual small business event, held in partnership with the New Hampshire Small Business Development Center (NH SBDC), New Hampshire Division of Economic Development, and local and regional chambers of commerce, is meant to engage small business owners and managers in public policy discussion and debate, as well as provide them with practical and relevant information to help manage and grow their business. Small Business Day is sponsored by Public Service of New Hampshire, Bank of America and media sponsor New Hampshire Business Review.

Small Business Day at the State House will begin with a panel discussion with some of the state’s top elected leaders: Senate Majority Leader Jeb Bradley, Senate Democratic Leader Sylvia Larsen and House Minority Leader Terie Norelli (expected). The state leadership panel will focus specifically on top small business issues of 2012 and how state elected leaders will resolve them.

Two presentations will follow the legislative panel. First, New Hampshire Department of Administrative Services Commissioner Linda Hodgdon will explain the ins and outs of doing business with the state. Small business owners interested in supplying the state with everything it needs to function, from pencils and pens to computers and calculators, will learn how to engage in this process.

Next, New Hampshire Department of Employment Security Commissioner Tara Reardon will discuss the recently enacted NH Working programs and how they can help small businesses find the right job applicants. She will also provide an overview of the Economic and Labor Market Information Bureau (ELMI), the type of information available through ELMI and how small businesses might use it to their advantage.

Following a short break, New Hampshire Division of Economic Development Interim Director Chris Way will moderate a panel discussion called “Strategies for Financing Your Business.” Small business owners who feel like securing capital can sometimes be an uphill battle will hear from a panel of commercial lenders and representatives of alternative lending programs about financing options that may be open to them and help their business meet its growth objectives.

Gov. John Lynch has been invited to make closing remarks.

Participating chambers of commerce include the Exeter Area, Greater Peterborough, Hampton Area, Hanover Area, Lakes Region, Merrimack, Mount Washington Valley, Northern Gateway Regional, Plymouth Regional, Waterville Valley Region and Wolfeboro Area chambers of commerce.

The cost to attend Small Business Day at the State House is $15 per person and includes continental breakfast. To register, visit nhbia.org, Events or call 603-224-5388 x116.

VentureX Startup Pitch Competition Announces Semi-Finalists

Monday, January 9th, 2012

The abi Innovation Hub and Wasabi Ventures is excited to announce the 10 semi-finalists for New Hampshire’s first ever, ultimate pitch competition, VentureX.  Start-ups interested in taking part in VentureX were asked to submit a short application, of which only 10 were invited to participate.  The top 10 were selected from a highly competitive field of early stage technology companies, ranging from mobile crm communications to a digital asset storage solution for professional and prosumer photographers.  The 10 semi-finalists are Digital Harbor App, Pokos Communications, My Bridal Dream, Try It Now Network, KYA Serve, Sumpto, Mosaic Storage Systems, Conforme, EyeSpy, and UVR Defense Tech. 

“The response to this competition has been tremendous,” says Jamie Coughlin, Entrepreneur in Residence at the abi Innovation Hub.  He adds, “The caliber of applicants was top notch.  I think the response to VentureX is indicative of the growing need to fund and mentor early stage startup companies here in the granite state.  It definitely shows that NH is a growing hub of innovation.”

The final rounds of VentureX will take place on January 26th, at 5:30pm and will be held at the abi Innovation Hub.  The event will begin with an expo-style, cocktail party.  The 10 lucky applicants will set up booths and present their project or startup to attendees. Open and free to the public, each attendee will be given 5 golden tickets, which they can distribute among the 10 startups as they wish (e.g. all 5 tickets to one, 1 ticket to 5 different competitors).

The three participants that collect the most golden tickets will qualify for the final pitch round. These three finalists each get 10 minutes to pitch their startup to a panel of five successful entrepreneurs and investors.  At the end of the evening, the panel will choose the winner and an investment of $30,000 will be made.

Tom Kuegler, General Partner of Wasabi Ventures, noted  “The 10 semi-finalists have much to be proud of.  The competition to get to this stage was fierce.  Not only was the field made up of disruptive technologies and unique business models, but I was most impressed by the entrepreneurs behind the ideas.  They were passionate and communicated their ideas in a concise, professional and energetic manner.  VentureX is ultimately a platform for innovative ideas and people; and in the final round we have both.”

For more information, or to attend visit venturex.wasabiventures.com.

NH Economy Featured on CBS News

Thursday, January 5th, 2012

As Karen Brown of CBS News notes, “New Hampshire has seen first in the nation pay off. The state’s unemployment rate is a low 5.2 percent, exports are at an all-time high, and the state is seeing a more modern manufacturing sector continue to grow — all factors that will be highlighted,” Brown said, “as the nation turns its attention to the first primary.”

The piece that ran on CBS’ Early Show today featured interviews with Governor Lynch and DED Interim Director Chris Way, both talking about the advantages to businesses setting up shop in New Hampshire. The piece also featured Bill Skelley, president and founder of Skelley Medical, who moved his business from Massachusetts to New Hampshire after a chance meeting with Governor Lynch started the ball rolling.

Check out the full piece below, which also talks about why NH being first in the nation for primaries is also good for business. If you’re reading this somewhere that doesn’t show the embedded video below, you can watch it or read an abridged transcript at the CBS News website.

SBA Accepting Nominations for Small Business Innovation Research Awards

Thursday, January 5th, 2012

The U.S. Small Business Administration is seeking nominations for awards honoring the critical economic role small businesses play in federally funded research and development through SBA’s Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs. 

Three awards will be given, one for companies that have participated in the SBIR/STTR programs, one for individuals who advocate on behalf of the programs, and a third “Hall of Fame” award recognizing companies that have an extended period of extraordinary success of research, innovation, and product commercialization within the SBIR or STTR program. 

The Tibbetts Awards are named after Roland Tibbetts, who was instrumental in developing SBIR, a highly competitive program to ensure small businesses get a chance to compete for federal research and development funding, along with the opportunities it provides to profit from commercialization of the technologies they develop.   

The SBIR and STTR programs currently account for more than $2.5 billion per year in federal R&D funds and are coordinated by the SBA in cooperation with 11 other federal agencies with large external research and development budgets. 

The awards are presented to companies and individuals that are beacons of promise and models of excellence in high technology.  Typical of past award winners are a Maine company that created a self-propelled and eco-friendly “AquaPod” for sustainable aqua-culture. A previous Hall of Fame award winner that won numerous SBIR grants – a major west coast chip manufacturer – started with a staff of 35 and has expanded to a global work force of 17,500. 

Selections for Tibbetts Awards are based on several factors, including the economic impact of the technological innovation, overall business achievement and demonstration of effective collaborations. 

Nominations for these awards opened December 15, 2011 and will close 5 PM EST on January 31, 2012.  Awards will be presented in Washington, DC, in April 2012. To submit a nomination, please visit tibbetts.challenge.gov  (Tibbetts Awards – companies and individuals) and sbirhof.challenge.gov  (Hall of Fame Awards).