The Maryland Technology Development Corp. (TEDCO), of Columbia, is offering a new economic relief initiative to benefit socially and economically disadvantaged and rural early-stage technology-based businesses hit hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic.
On Dec. 17, Governor Larry Hogan announced a state emergency economic relief package that includes $5 million to help socially and economically disadvantaged companies or companies in rural areas negatively affected by COVID-19. The economic relief is available statewide to qualifying companies that demonstrate some adverse impact from the COVID crisis.
The announcement from the governor was part of $180 million in additional economic relief contributing to a cumulative total of more than $600 million provided by the State to date in emergency economic relief.
“The COVID-19 crisis has significant and potentially long-lasting effects on Maryland’s entrepreneurial ecosystem,” said Troy LeMaile-Stovall, TEDCO’s CEO and executive director. “Much of the current recovery efforts are focused on more established small and large businesses. This is rightfully so, as the impact is devastating to many of these entities. However, this crisis is a ‘make-it-or-break-it’ time for many younger companies, like those in TEDCO’s portfolio.”
The funds administered by TEDCO will be provided to early-stage companies that are impacted by the current crisis and are in need of bridge funding to survive and prosper as the downturn and COVID-19 crisis subsides. The funds will focus on companies that have the highest barriers to traditional financing but are still expected to scale to the next phase of fundraising.
Startups employ Marylanders, contribute to critical supply chains, and provide valuable revenue to the State and local governments. TEDCO’s portfolio alone consists of over 250 companies that employ over 2,400 Marylanders. TEDCO also assists and guides scores of other entrepreneurs and startup companies and frequently becomes one of the only sources of financing as more traditional forms of capital become scarce.
“There is significant evidence to conclude that the COVID-19 crisis is disproportionately affecting entrepreneurs who are socially and economically disadvantaged or those entrepreneurs in the rural regions of the state,” said LeMaile-Stovall. “This is attributable to two main reasons: these businesses tend to face underlying issues that make it harder to run and scale successfully, and they are more likely to be concentrated in the industries most immediately affected by the pandemic.”
The funding should be available by early-February 2021. For more information, go to www.tedcomd.com.