Local businesses now can apply to participate in the City of Sacramento’s “Economic Gardening 2.0” program, which offers companies up to $50,000 in matching funds for future growth.
In addition to the funding, the program pairs local companies with business experts who assist in analyzing data and creating strategies to achieve desired outcomes. To be selected, companies must already be established in the city of Sacramento and have five to 99 employees and $1 million to $50 million in revenues.
“The unexpected impacts of COVID-19 continue to affect businesses in the Sacramento region,” said City of Sacramento Project Manager Lorrie Clark. “Economic Gardening’s $50,000 grant matching opportunity and high-level business technical assistance are here to help, fostering innovation, growth and workforce development.”
The City’s Office of Innovation and Economic Development, which manages the Economic Gardening program, also is working with California State University, Sacramento (CSUS) Career Center to enhance opportunities for local businesses. As part of the program, companies will have the ability to work with the CSUS Career Center on talent development, with the potential utilization of a student fellow.
The City will provide selected businesses with up to $50,000 that the business must match in equivalent funds to implement the recommendations they received during their consulting.
Six local companies were chosen to participate in the Economic Gardening 2.0 this past year. After the businesses received their 36 hours of market research and business analysis, five of the six companies are now moving on to the next phase to receive up to $50,000 that the business will match with their own funds.
“I am excited to begin this phase of Economic Gardening 2.0.,” said Mark Adams, owner of AHI Construction. “I’ve received more invaluable insight into my businesses growth opportunity from the Economic Gardening consultants than when I’ve spent thousands of dollars in the past with various coaches and consultants. The partnership with Sac State allowed AHI to reach the next level of visibility after adding a graphic design intern to create our website. Everyone’s passion, knowledge and concern for this project has shown throughout.”
“The Economic Gardening program has been an invaluable experience for Honey,” said CEO Meghan Phillips of design and marketing agency Honey. “The first phase of the program took Honey through our own process: a detailed research and discovery that provided strategic guidance on areas our business could grow and optimize. As a result, our team has a dedicated focus on national business development efforts. This will allow Honey to invest further in our mission of empowering passion in our team, community and the food, beverage, and agriculture industries that we serve through design and marketing.”
The window to apply for the new round of Economic Gardening closes on Thursday, April 22. Complete and eligible applications will be reviewed and scored by a panel consisting of City staff and experts in the field. Based on panel scoring, staff will select up to five companies to participate in the program.
Interested businesses can apply online at the City’s website.
Funded by the City’s Innovation and Growth Fund, Economic Gardening 2.0 builds on the City’s recently adopted “ScaleUp” plan, an inclusive economic development action agenda. ScaleUp is intended to guide how the City utilizes its unique assets to generate sustained, quality economic growth and identifies promising initiatives to help build-up local businesses and advance job opportunities.