YBI: Helping new businesses compete

YSU and the Youngstown Business Incubator hopes a new partnership will help local entrepreneurs and emerging businesses better compete for federal and state grants.

Under Youngstown Phase Zero, technology-based start-up and small businesses can receive up to $5,000 for data gathering, lab testing, research, analysis and other reasonable expenses incurred to pay for the necessary preliminary work in applying for government grants that will help them develop new products for commercialization.

“The result will be that these businesses will be able to prepare higher quality grant proposals that will greatly improve their chances of receiving the federal and state funding that is crucial for them to move forward with the development of their new products,” said Peter Kasvinsky, dean of the YSU College of Graduate Studies and Research.

Youngstown Phase Zero is administered by YSU in collaboration with the YSU College of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics; YSU School of Graduate Studies and Research; and YBI. The Raymond John Wean Foundation, as well as YSU Graduate Studies and Research and STEM, fund the program.

The Youngstown Business Incubator is a non-profit, social enterprise organization with a primary mission to accelerate the start-up and development of scalable, technology-based companies in northeast Ohio.“These kinds of partnerships are absolutely crucial to diversifying our local economy and spurring the development of new products, processes and technologies in the Mahoning Valley,” said Barb Ewing, YBI chief operating officer. “We hope that local businesses will take advantage of this resource as they look to become more competitive in the world economy.”

Applications for grants will be handled through Mike Hripko, director of YSU STEM Research and Technology Based Economic Development. For more information, contact Hripko at 330-941-4634.