|Program||# of Grants||EDA Funds|
|Economic Adjustment Assistance||1||$999,615|
|*One grant is from prior year recoveries.|
During FY 2012, EDA awarded 29 grants in the State of Missouri totaling $5.4 million. These projects support infrastructure, workforce development, disaster recovery and strategic economic planning. EDA’s investments support bottom- up, regionally-owned economic development initiatives that will create jobs and position Missouri communities to maximize their economic assets and potential. These investments are expected to create or retain 215 jobs according to grantee estimates.
Investment Spotlight: EDA Investment Brings Entrepreneurship Opportunities
The Kansas City region has gained a competitive advantage in a number of information-technology industry sectors. The data processing, hosting and related services sector is forecasted to add hundreds of jobs over the next five years in the region. Telecommunications also has a strong cluster in the Kansas City area with Sprint’s headquarters located here. In recent years, however, the area lost more than 8,000 telecommunication jobs between 2006 and 2011. Forecasts over the next five years call for continued losses, although at a reduced rate. These highly-skilled displaced workers could, with some training, start their own businesses or work for young businesses in the industry.
In FY 2012, EDA selected a business-civic consortium led by University of Missouri at Kansas City (UMKC) as a winner of the i6 Challenge competition. Developed through collaboration with corporate partners including Sprint, Hallmark and Time Warner Cable, as well as the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, the initiative, called the Kansas City Digital Sandbox, brings to the region a new process for technology commercialization by clustering digital innovation resources into a central hub that has become a connection point for large businesses, emerging enterprises and entrepreneurs to jointly develop new products and services.
The Digital Sandbox addresses two critical needs of a vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem in Kansas City: the need to connect the R&D resources of the area’s major corporations into the region’s entrepreneurial and university research networks; and the need for access to early-stage proof-of-concept support to allow startup technology ventures. Consortium leaders anticipate that the Digital Sandbox will generate a minimum of 10 new high-growth companies with either follow-on funding or at least $1 million in revenue each within two years of the launch.