CalOSBA Announces Grant Recipients to Establish 10
CalOSBA Announces Grant Recipients to Establish 10

CalOSBA Announces Grant Recipients to Establish 10 Regional Innovation Hubs in California

The California Office of the Small Business Advocate (CalOSBA) today announced grant awards to recipients of the Inclusive Innovation Hub (iHub2) program. The Inclusive Innovation Hub (iHub2) program is a one-time, $2.5M investment that will help accelerate regionally focused strategies to spur innovation and diversification across industry sectors and geographies while attracting entrepreneurs from underserved business communities.

“The Inclusive Innovation Hub program is building on the strengths of the clustered regional model with a new focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion. We believe it will accelerate technology and science-based firms in key industry areas with strong outreach to diverse founders and underserved geographies. California leads the nation in business starts and working to support small businesses in these sectors continues to be critical to our full economic recovery,” said CalOSBA Director, Tara Lynn Gray.

CalOSBA has designated 10 Inclusive Innovation Hubs throughout California through a competitive RFP. Designations will go to the to the following selected awardees: Transforming Ideas into Action iHubClicks 2 Bricks, The Innovation Hub at Santa Cruz SBDC Central Valley Inclusive Innovation HubiHub San JoaquinSiskiyuou County iHubEconomic Development Collaborative iHubChicostart iHubHeal.LA iHub at LARTA InstituteLos Angeles Cleantech Incubator iHub; and University of San Diego, The Brink SBDC iHub.

Each iHub will receive $250,000 to implement a unique 3-year strategy to stimulate partnerships, economic development, and job creation. The 10 designees were selected for their ability to leverage specific local assets to stimulate regional innovation economies by bringing together startup businesses, research institutions, economic development organizations, business groups and venture capitalists. The performance of each iHub will be measured in terms of its ability to support new innovation businesses headed by diverse founders.

CalOSBA Director Gray kicked off the iHubprogram today by visiting The Brink SBDC in San Diego. The Brink’s inclusive innovation strategy calls for solving for knowledge and capital barriers for entrepreneurs and supercharging their social networks for growth. San Diego’s diverse population is our greatest asset as is our location at an international border, on the coast- making us poised for blue, green, tech and scientific innovation our world so needs.

“As an Inclusive Innovation Hub, our commitment deepens to remove barriers and offer support for all entrepreneurs. The work is inclusive and strategic- to make connections for financial, social and community capital to be invested in the co-creation of solutions and the building of our future,” said University of San Diego, The Brink SBDC Director, Rachel Lazano Castro.


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