Grant program expanding to Ottawa County

Press Staff Writer

A program designed to help entrepreneurs and small-business owners thrive in an economy clouded by the coronavirus pandemic is expanding into Ottawa County.
The Regional Incubator for Sustainability and Entrepreneurship Program is accepting applications for small-business innovation grants through Nov. 6. The program objective is to increase employment and economic development by linking business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs with regional service providers who have expertise in business start-ups and development.
Grant funding can be used for capital improvements, developing or acquiring online platforms such as websites or mobile apps or other purposes.
Grants from $500 to $3,500 will be available. Applications will be screened by a committee from the Ottawa County Improvement Corp., which is partnering with the Ottawa County Community Foundation and the Burton D. Morgan Foundation.
RISE is a project of the Erie County Economic Development Corp., Bowling Green State University and Norwalk Economic Development Corp.
Since its inception in 2011, RISE has served more than 240 local entrepreneurs in various stages of development and industries, including food and beverage, retail consumer services, tourism and arts and entertainment.
While grant availability is limited, all applicants with a completed application will be invited to participate in a one-time training course, Remaining Relevant in Chaos, at no cost. Topics covered will include communication, digital marketing and management.
Grants will be awarded prior to the end of the year.
“We are very excited about this new collaborative effort with the Erie County Economic Development Corp. and are optimistic about the benefits it will bring to the small businesses in Ottawa County,” said Ken Williams, OCIC executive board president.
More information about the grant program is available at


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