10.22.14

SCHUMER LAUNCHES PUSH TO SECURE MORE THAN $1.3 MILLION IN ADDITIONAL FEDERAL FUNDING FOR BUFFALO’S LAUNCH NY, WHICH IS ALREADY HAVING HUGE IMPACT ON UPSTATE JOB GROWTH – FED FUNDS WOULD PROVIDE MORE START-UPS & ENTREPRENEURS IN WNY, CNY, ROCHESTER-FINGER LAKES & S. TIER WITH RESOURCES NEEDED TO GROW, EXPAND, & CREATE JOBS

Schumer Previously Secured $637,000 for Launch New York Which Supports Start-Ups & Entrepreneurs Across 27 Counties in Upstate NY; Today, Schumer Launched Campaign to Secure an Additional $1.3M for Launch NY to Help Identify & Invest in Promising Companies Across Upstate NY

Federal EDA Funds Would Allow Launch NY to Create a Mechanism to Invest in Entrepreneurs in the Manufacturing & Medical Fields, Develop a Professional Mentoring Network & Provide Resources to Train Next Generation of Workers


Schumer: Additional EDA Funds Would Build on Success, Bolster Economic Development & Jobs in Western New York, Central New York, Rochester-Finger Lakes & Southern Tier Regions

Today, U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer urged the federal Economic Development Agency (EDA) to provide $1,366,000 million in federal funds for Launch New York to support and bolster businesses in Upstate New York communities. Launch NY, headquartered in Buffalo, aims to spur economic development across 27 counties in the Western New York, Central New York, Rochester-Finger Lakes, and Southern Tier regions. Schumer explained that he is pushing to secure a second allocation of federal funds for Launch NY, which recently applied for three EDA program grants through the U.S. Department of Commerce to provide new start-ups and entrepreneurs in Upstate New York with the resources needed to succeed in the 21st Century business climate. Schumer highlighted the success Launch NY has already had with the initial $637,000 in federal funding Schumer helped to secure in 2012, and urged the EDA to continue to help build on those successes by providing Launch New York continued federal support. Schumer said these EDA funds would enable the organization to create a national mentoring network to connect local start-ups with highly-skilled professionals, and ensure that the new generation of workers has the expertise and training to succeed. Launch NY would also establish a capital investment fund to invest in new entrepreneurs, particularly in the medical and manufacturing fields. Schumer said that each program comes with a funding request match, meaning Launch NY could potentially harness a total of $2,866,000 million to support job creation and bolster economic development across Upstate New York.

“Start-up companies are the job-creating engines of our future, but the first few years can be extremely challenging. We must do everything we can to support new businesses and help them to reach the point of profitability as quickly as possible, so that they can continue to grow and put people to work. Launch New York has put the initial federal investment into action in a real way, helping to support and nurture entrepreneurs in Upstate New York. It’s now time to build on that success by providing them with more resources so that they can grow their programs and help even more companies succeed. That is why I am pushing to secure over $1.3 million in federal funds for Launch NY to create a national network to connect start-ups, particularly those in the medical and manufacturing fields, with highly skilled professional mentors, as well as local training programs to give workers the skills they need to help sustain the business,” said Schumer. “This network of entrepreneurs would also get a boost from a seed fund Launch NY is aiming to create, which would allow the organization to further support its emerging entrepreneurs. I will fight tooth and nail to secure this funding for Launch NY and do everything in my power to grow local start-up companies across Upstate New York.”

“Small businesses are our most promising way to put people to work today while creating promising job growth for the future. Entrepreneurs are brave individuals who work hard every day to see their business grow, and at Launch NY, we support them so they can continue to succeed and reach their full potential” said Marnie LaVigne, CEO of Launch NY. “I am so grateful to Senator Schumer for his advocacy on behalf of Launch NY, and small, entrepreneurial businesses across the region. Senator Schumer has always understood the important role emerging businesses play in our Upstate economy, and we look forward to continuing to  work together to drive the spirit of entrepreneurship and keep people working across New York State.”

Schumer highlighted that as a result of the initial $637,000 in federal funds secured from the EDA that helped to found Launch NY, entrepreneurs and state-up companies all across the region are already receiving access to vital support. The initial two year grant from EDA, which was matched by funding from the John R. Oishei Foundation and the Margaret Wendt Foundation, allowed Launch NY to begin implementing the Regional Entrepreneurial Action Plan (REAP). In the last two years, Launch NY has met with nearly 7,000 entrepreneurs, 1,300 investors, and over 2,500 resource providers. Launch NY has been the driving force behind the Bright Buffalo Niagara Venture Forum, the NEXT Conference held near Syracuse, and is working to support the Buffalo Business Plan Competition. In addition, Launch NY has worked to establish an Entrepreneur In Residence Program (EIR) – that allows new start-up companies to gain access to qualified and experienced entrepreneurs that can help mentor and guide their early stage company. Launch New York has provided coaching to 169 entrepreneurs with over 450 employees in their initial two years. Launch has also focused on helping to spur investment in these early stage companies – and has already facilitated the investment of more than $2 million into start-up companies in Upstate New York. Companies like Empire Genomics in Buffalo, and QuadPharma, which was recently acquired by Kinex, are examples of early stage companies that Launch NY has helped support.

Schumer explained that in order to build on that existing success Launch NY has applied for three separate EDA grants to continue to provide additional support local entrepreneurs and provide necessary resources to start-ups across Upstate New York. First, Launch NY has applied for $616,000 from the Commerce Department’s Economic Adjustment Assistance Program (EAA), which would enable the organization to set up a national mentoring network that would connect Upstate start-ups with highly specialized professionals to provide advice and guidance to keep start-up companies competitive in the global marketplace. The funding match for this grant is $750,000, meaning Launch NY could potentially receive $1,366,000 as a result of funding through the EAA Program.

Launch NY has also applied for $500,000 from the Commerce Department’s i6 Challenge Program, which would support this national mentoring network by connecting entrepreneurs to local trainers to prepare and ensure that workers have the skills and expertise necessary to succeed. The funding match for this grant is $500,000, so Launch NY could potentially receive $1,000,000 as a result of funding through the i6 Challenge Program.

Finally, Launch NY has also applied for $250,000 from the Commerce Department’s Cluster Grants for Seed Funds Program, which would provide seed money to up-and-coming entrepreneurs in Upstate NY by establishing a capital investment fund. By creating this fund, Launch NY will establish a mechanism to invest in new entrepreneurs, particularly those in the medical and manufacturing fields. The funding match for this grant is $250,000, meaning Launch NY could potentially receive $500,000 as a result of funding through the Seed Funds Program.

These new grants will help Launch NY establish additional relationships with new companies and attract even greater investment to the local economy. Traditionally, Upstate New York has seen a significant gap in venture capital which has limited the growth of state-up companies. However, with Schumer’s help and EDA funding Launch NY was able to begin working to address that gap by matching researchers and entrepreneurs with innovating ideas with investors and venture capitalists from across the Country. Continued funding for Launch NY, which is headquartered in Buffalo, but which has a reach that sprawls 27 counties in upstate New York, will allow for even greater investment and subsequent job growth.

Schumer has a long history of supporting Launch NY, in addition to securing the initial federal investment in the program in 2012, he also brought the Regional Administrator of EDA to Buffalo to visit Launch NY in 2011. Schumer has stepped in and helped Launch NY gain an expedited approval of its non-profit status from the IRS in 2013 – a process that without Schumer’s help could have taken over two years and would have put a significant amount of Launch New York’s funding commitments in Jeapordy.

Copies of Senator Schumer’s three letters to the Secretary of Commerce appear below:

Dear Commerce Secretary Pritzker:

I am pleased to write in support of the application submitted by Launch New York for funding through the Economic Development Association’s Economic Adjustment Assistance Programs.  Such funding will further support Launch New York’s investment in the Upstate New York business community by providing new start-ups with the necessary resources to succeed in a 21st century business climate.  

Launch New York is currently working with a diverse group of service provider organizations to bolster the business ecosystems of several different upstate communities.  With nearly 180 outreach partnerships, Launch New York has a strong presence across Upstate New York.  Headquartered in Buffalo, they maintain healthy visibility in the Southern Tier and the Finger Lakes, and stretch as far as the Central New York region.  This sprawling reach means that Launch New York is working to spur economic development in 27 different counties.  

           

With this funding, Launch New York will invest in a younger generation of New Yorkers by creating a national mentoring network that will connect upstate start-ups with highly specialized professionals that are unavailable locally.  In addition, Launch New York plans to supplement this access with a network of local trainers to provide instruction to brand new workforces.  By allowing access to the best and brightest minds, Launch New York is seeking to ensure that our businesses of tomorrow have the wherewithal to compete in a complex global marketplace. They know how crucial it is to provide new and innovative opportunities that will keep our young people employed, and ensure that the Upstate economy is equipped for the 21st century.  I applaud Launch New York for their foresight and sincerely hope the application meets with your approval. 

Thank you for your consideration. 

Sincerely,

 

Charles E. Schumer

United States Senator

Dear Commerce Secretary Pritzker:

I am pleased to write in support of the application submitted by Launch New York for funding through the Department of Commerce’s i6 Challenge Program.  Such funding will further support Launch New York’s investment in the Upstate New York business community by providing new start-ups with access to a mentoring network and training programs necessary to promote the type of innovation required in a 21st century marketplace.

Launch New York is currently working with a diverse group of service provider organizations to bolster the business ecosystems of several different Upstate communities.  With nearly 180 outreach partnerships, Launch New York has a strong presence across Upstate New York.  Headquartered in Buffalo, they maintain healthy visibility in the Southern Tier and the Finger Lakes, and stretch as far as the Central New York region.  This sprawling reach means that Launch New York is working to spur economic development in 27 different counties.  

           

With funding, Launch New York will be better able to access high specialized professionals in a variety of fields by setting up a national mentoring network.  By working with their service providing partners, LNY is committed to developing resources that are already in place.  These professionals will link Upstate New York’s newest manufacturers with access to the best and brightest, ensuring that a new generation of entrepreneurs will have the necessary expertise to succeed.  They also plan on linking local trainers with new businesses as a means of preparing their workforce for the challenges of competing in a global economy. I applaud Launch New York for their foresight and sincerely hope the application meets with your approval. 

Thank you for your consideration. 

Sincerely,

 

Charles E. Schumer

United States Senator

Dear Commerce Secretary Pritzker:

  

I am pleased to write in support of the application submitted by Launch New York for funding through the Department of Commerce’s cluster grants to support the development of Seed Capital Funds.  Such funding will further support Launch New York’s investment in the Upstate New York business community by providing the necessary resources to plan, design, implement and promote a seed fund for start-up businesses.

Launch New York is currently working with a diverse group of service provider organizations to bolster the business ecosystems of several different Upstate communities.  With nearly 180 outreach partnerships, Launch New York has a strong presence across Upstate New York.  Headquartered in Buffalo, they maintain healthy visibility in the Southern Tier and the Finger Lakes, and stretch as far as the Central New York region.  This sprawling reach means that Launch New York is working to spur economic development in 27 different counties.  

With funding, Launch New York will provide seed money to up-and-coming entrepreneurs within the Upstate business ecosystem.  In order to do this, LNY requires the capital necessary to establish such a fund.  Their dedicated professionals will undertake the task of creating and marketing a seed money fund that would provide necessary capital to Upstate New York start-ups.  Their goal is simple – job creation.  By creating a mechanism to invest in new entrepreneurs, particularly in the medical and manufacturing fields, Launch New York is working to ensure that investment in New York’s younger generations pays off.  Providing seed money to local entrepreneurs will ensure that New Yorkers are able to make a living in the state that they call home.  I applaud Launch New York for their foresight, and sincerely hope the application meets with your approval. 

Thank you for your consideration. 

Sincerely,

 

Charles E. Schumer

United States Senator

  

###



Previous Article Next Article