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Fund for Our Economic Future Approves $3 Million in Funding for Job Creation

By Rachel Abbey McCafferty, Crain's Cleveland Business

Cleveland’s Fund for Our Economic Future approved $3 million in funding to local organizations to support business development and job creation, the collaborative, philanthropic group of funders said in a news release. And, for the first time, the fund will be using so-called recoverable grants to recoup some of the money it’s investing.

According to the release, the recipients of the funding are:

• Team NEO, which will receive a one-year award of up to $650,000. The fund is a co-creator of Team NEO. This grant will go toward the group’s “shared, regional economic competitiveness strategy, business development and economic research.”

• BioEnterprise, which will receive a two-year award of up to $800,000 as it aims to grow the “bioscience cluster.”

• Magnet, which will receive a two-year award of up to $900,000 to support its Prism initiative. The Prism program helps midsize manufacturers grow.

• JumpStart will receive a two-year award of up to $500,000 to support its Scaleup Initiative for “high-growth potential companies.” It will also receive a one-year award of up to $150,000 for its Startup Network.

The Team NEO funding is a traditional grant, while the awards to the others are a mix of recoverable and traditional grants, said Bethia Burke, director of grantmaking, evaluation and emerging initiatives for the fund. The specifics of the makeup of each type of grant are still being determined, she said. 

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