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Innovate SOMO, a regional workforce network in which the Efactory is a partner, was selected for a $2 million federal grant.
The U.S. Department of Commerce's Economic Development Administration selected Innovate SOMO, aka the Southern Missouri Innovation Network, out of nearly 200 applications nationwide, according to a news release. It's one of 51 operational support grants totaling $47 million recently announced by the federal government.
The Efactory, Missouri State University’s business incubator, is partnering with Cape Girardeau-based technology incubator Codefi LLC on the initiative. Innovate SOMO is designed to assist entrepreneurs in 47 counties with software developer training and other programs, according to past reporting.
“We are excited to combine our strengths and expertise with our partners at Codefi and the network partners in communities throughout southern Missouri, to help more entrepreneurs start and grow the leading companies of the future,” said Rachel Anderson, director of the Efactory, in the release. “This new innovation network will connect, strengthen and add new resources and services immediately that would otherwise be impossible to build independently.”
The Innovate SOMO initiative previously has received nearly $1 million in seed funding, according to past reporting.
The first downtown Springfield branch for Arvest Bank opened; a longtime licensed massage therapist became a first-time business owner; and 7 Brew Coffee opened its fourth shop in Springfield.