In a move that will advance key elements of the emerging World Class Greater Philadelphia business growth agenda, Mayor Nutter this morning announced an exciting new initiative to support Philadelphia startups and entrepreneurs. In partnership with the Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation, the City launched Startup PHL, an initiative that aims to increase the availability of seed-stage capital for startups and accelerate the development of a supportive environment for entrepreneurs. Startup PHL will kick off with the creation of a new public/private venture fund that will make seed-stage investments in Philadelphia-based tech startups as well as a $500,000 fund for innovative ideas that support startups and entrepreneurs in the city.
These new investments correspond directly with two of the six priority strategies for boosting regional business growth that have been highlighted by the World Class Business Growth Strategy Team. This team, comprised of 36 regional business, civic, and government leaders and issue experts, has identified strengthening entrepreneurial networks and increasing the availability of growth capital as top business growth priorities for the region. Brought together by the Economy League and CEO Council for Growth as part of the World Class initiative, this group of leaders evaluated the most promising strategies for Greater Philadelphia to achieve World Class goals in the areas of entrepreneurship, innovation, international business, and cluster strengths. The team’s work was informed by research and best practices in other regions as well as analysis and discussion of current needs and opportunities specific to our region. The full list of priority strategies identified by this Strategy Team – available in draft form here – is serving as the basis for a Business Growth Global Positioning Strategy (GPS) for Greater Philadelphia to be released in winter 2012.
“With the Mayor’s exciting announcement today about increasing growth capital for startups and supporting entrepreneurial networks, the City is making the kinds of investments that will drive business growth in our region over the long run,” said Economy League Executive Director Steve Wray. “These efforts are wholly in line with the priority regional strategies that are emerging through the World Class initiative.”
World Class Business Growth Strategy Team Co-Chair and appRenaissance CEO Bob Moul called the launch of Startup PHL “a great day for Philadelphia and Philadelphia’s entrepreneurs.”