Pence announces $1-billion investment into Indiana innovation and entrepreneurship

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (WOWO): Governor Mike Pence has announced plans to invest a billion dollars over the next decade to advance innovation and entrepreneurship in Indiana.

Pence made the announcement during the annual Innovation Showcase in Indianapolis, outlining a proposal he says will strengthen and accelerate innovation throughout the state through strategic partnerships, ensuring economic and job growth.

“As a state, we have worked diligently to establish a pro-growth business climate in Indiana and our efforts are being recognized across the nation,” said Governor Pence. “We cut costs, lowered taxes and reduced regulations to allow job creators to invest in what matters most – in their businesses and in their employees. Indiana is ranked first in the Midwest for business and first in the nation for small business regulations, but we’re not done yet. We must build on this economic momentum and increase collaboration between educators, community leaders, industry partners and most importantly, idea generators, to further propel innovation across the Hoosier state for generations to come.”

The 10-year plan includes:

  • Developing Indiana’s future innovators and entrepreneurs through partnerships with secondary school programs designed to encourage interest in, teach the economics of, and outline the opportunities in innovation and entrepreneurship.
  • Supporting education, research and entrepreneurial practice at Indiana’s higher education and research institutions by leveraging strategic partnerships to support and expand current innovation and entrepreneurship programs, advance research initiatives and programs like the Purdue Foundry Accelerator with embedded Entrepreneurs in Residence, and establish a system for sharing best practices across the state’s network of private and public institutions.
  • Enhancing regional entrepreneurial culture and investment by supporting start-up costs and program development for co-working spaces, incubators and innovation centers, and providing matching funds for regional and community investments in start-up and scale-up companies.
  • Supporting industry-driven strategic innovation and advancements by increasing support of industry initiatives, such as AgriNovus Indiana, BioCrossroads, Conexus, Energy Systems Network and TechPoint, and by spurring development of cross-sector transformational efforts, such as the Institute for Advanced Composites Manufacturing Innovation, OrthoWorx, 16 Tech and the Indiana Biosciences Research Institute.
  • Accelerating investments in early-stage, mid-market and high-growth companies and encouraging further investments from private investors, communities and education and research institutes through matching funds to increase Indiana’s network of startup firms and accelerate the growth of mid-market firms.
  • Expanding opportunities for small businesses by integrating resources and micro-lending initiatives to encourage local community development while developing new programs to increase opportunities for all Hoosiers to start and a grow a business.

Governor Pence will direct the Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC) to coordinate and oversee the state’s strategy, through an Executive Order issued today.

Governor Pence will also request funding toward his innovation and entrepreneurship initiative as follows:

  • $500 Million: Pence will request that the Indiana Public Retirement System (INPRS) invest a portion of its $30 billion investment fund in early-stage and mid-market Indiana companies that are, in turn, investing in Indiana, creating new jobs and generating tax revenues to local and state government.
  • $300 Million: Pence will request that the General Assembly continue to appropriate $30 million annually toward the 21Fund, which directs investments and grants into early-stage, mid-market and high-growth companies to help accelerate Hoosier solutions and services into the marketplace.
  • $100 Million: Pence will request that the General Assembly approve transferability of the Venture Capital Investment (VCI) tax credit to increase the accessibility of private sector funding for innovators and startup companies. He says the tax credit program, which is currently capped at $12.5 million annually, will allow Indiana businesses to attract increased capital from investors across the world that have no Indiana tax liability and therefore receive no benefit from the tax credit.
  • $100 Million: Pence will seek an additional appropriation of $100 million over 10 years from the General Assembly to further advance innovation and entrepreneurship education, programs and practice through strategic partnerships with higher education and research institutes in Indiana. These partnerships would require a minimum 1:1 investment ratio.

“Indiana’s thought leaders, job creators and public-private partnerships are making tremendous strides in innovation and entrepreneurship today, and we hope that this commitment from the state will spark even more interest and help accelerate these efforts,” said Governor Pence. “With a collaborative and aligned strategy, Indiana will continue to be a global leader in innovation and entrepreneurship, helping to solve tomorrow’s challenges.”

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