TEDCO Announces State Support for its Rural Business Innovation Initiative

The Maryland Technology Development Corporation (TEDCO) will receive $500,000 in State funding during fiscal year 2015 to operate its well-received Rural Business Innovation Initiative (RBI2) program. Previously, RBI2 had been funded at a lower level through federal dollars or directly by TEDCO.

The new investment by the State will enable TEDCO to enhance the mentoring and business assistance offerings in rural Maryland and serve more start-up businesses than in the past.

RBI2 provides technical and business assistance to small and early-stage technology-based companies in rural Maryland, including Western Maryland (Garrett, Allegany, Washington and Frederick counties), Southern Maryland (Charles, Calvert and St. Mary’s counties), Northeastern Maryland (Carroll, Harford and Cecil counties) and the Eastern Shore (Kent, Caroline, Queen Anne, Talbot, Dorchester, Wicomico, Worcester and Somerset counties).

The program is designed to help companies overcome business and technical hurdles and advance to the next growth level. Over the last three years, RBI2 provided more than 5,000 hours of no-cost guidance and mentorship to more than 400 companies across the state.

“In Maryland, our innovation economy is driven by entrepreneurs from every corner of the state – not just our population centers,” said Gov. Martin O’Malley. “The investment we are making in our rural communities through TEDCO’s Rural Business Innovation Initiative means technology start-ups from Western Maryland to the Eastern Shore will have access to outstanding resources and mentoring to help them succeed.”

“I am proud to have worked with my fellow legislators to provide funding to TEDCO’s Rural Business Innovation Initiative for fiscal year 2015, which will support up-and-coming businesses in my constituency,” said Del. John L. Bohanan, Jr. “I have seen first-hand the impact that RBI2 has had in Southern Maryland and how it translates into growth for both our local and State economy.”

“We are incredibly grateful that Governor O’Malley and our state legislators recognize the value of TEDCO’s Rural Business Innovation Initiative in bringing entrepreneurs across Maryland to the next level of business success by providing funding to the RBI2 program,” said Rob Rosenbaum, president and executive director of TEDCO. “With the State’s investment in business innovation in our rural communities, TEDCO will be able to provide even higher levels of mentoring and technical assistance to those start-ups and entrepreneurs.”

Companies that meet the eligibility requirements for this program receive ongoing mentoring at no cost. For additional information about RBI2, including eligibility, please visit: http://tedco.md/program/rual-business-innovation-initiative-rbi2/.

The Maryland Technology Development Corporation (TEDCO), is the go-to source for entrepreneurial support and guidance for start-ups and early-stage companies engaged in bringing innovative ideas to the market. While founded by the Maryland General Assembly, TEDCO is an independent entity that makes seed/early-stage investments and manages private capital for angel and capital venture funds.