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U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $8 Million to Bolster Innovation and Entrepreneurship at the University of Florida


WASHINGTON – U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker today announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a more than $8 million grant to create a technology business incubator at the University of Florida in Gainesville, as part of Phase II of the development of the Florida Innovation Hub. According to grantee estimates, the incubator will have the capacity to serve up to 45 companies of varying size.

“The Obama Administration is committed to fostering innovation and supporting the job creators of tomorrow,” said Secretary Pritzker. “The EDA investment announced today will ensure that innovators and entrepreneurs in and around the University of Florida have a place to develop their ideas and build their businesses to make the region more competitive in the global economy.”

EDA’s investment will construct a new, state-of-the-art, LEED certified, multilevel technology business incubator facility. The facility will provide space to companies that require specialized wet and dry laboratories that are not yet available in the commercial market. A portion of the space will be devoted to an Entrepreneurial Woman's Center to provide ongoing assistance to the population that, according to the grantee, is currently underrepresented in the entrepreneurial ecosystem. The grantee expects this project to continue the success of Phase I of the Innovation Hub, which in its first three years assisted 60 companies resulting in 760 jobs and $50 million in private investment.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The Economic Development Administration marks 50 years of public service, leading the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation's regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA makes investments in economically distressed communities in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.