For Immediate Release - February 23, 2010

PATRICK-MURRAY ADMINISTRATION AND MASSACHUSETTS: IT'S ALL HERE LAUNCH STATE-WIDE INITIATIVE TO HIGHLIGHT THE COMMONWEALTH'S ENTREPRENEURIAL ECOSYSTEM

Innovative collaboration will generate job growth throughout the Commonwealth

CAMBRIDGE - Tuesday, February 23, 2010 - To mark National Entrepreneurship Week and the groundbreaking of the newly expanded Cambridge Innovation Center, Governor Deval Patrick today announced a new Massachusetts: It's All Here initiative to highlight the diverse resources available to entrepreneurs and small businesses throughout the Commonwealth.

The Start Here statewide collaborative campaign includes new opportunities, events, and access for small businesses, innovators and investors of Massachusetts that will take place throughout the next three months.

"The Massachusetts spirit of innovation, entrepreneurship and opportunity has benefitted the state, the nation and the world," said Governor Patrick. "This campaign will translate into business and job growth in the Commonwealth and help the state maintain its global competitiveness."

Governor Patrick has maintained a strong focus on creating the conditions for business growth, job creation and the needs of small business since the start of his administration. On February 10, the Governor filed legislation that provides tax credits for businesses that create new jobs, eases healthcare and unemployment insurance costs for employers and creates a new organization dedicated to providing businesses with the financial capital and resources they need to grow.

At today's event, attended by hundreds of entrepreneurs and business leaders, Governor Patrick declared February 23 "Massachusetts Entrepreneurship Day," and officially broke ground on the new Cambridge Innovation Center space which, thanks to new growth and high demand, will be nearly doubling its size by summer 2010. The Cambridge Innovation Center is the largest grouping of start-up companies under one roof on the East Coast with 240 tenants, most of them startup companies.

"Entrepreneurship and innovation are such vital components of the state's economy, and the administration's continued support of these areas is admirable," said Senator Karen Spilka, Senate Chair of the Joint Committee on Economic Development. "Together with the Senate President, I have been focusing on ways to create a more business-friendly environment and foster entrepreneurship through our economic development proposal. With all of the state's leaders so focused on growing businesses and growing jobs, we are well poised to create a strong future for innovation and growth here."

"The Commonwealth has a lot to offer Small Business owners, and I am pleased to see pro-active steps being taken to highlight some of them," said Senator Michael O. Moore, Chair of the Joint Committee on Community Development and Small Business. "It is important that state government serve as a friend and a partner to small business owners, especially in tough economic times such as these."

"For too long Massachusetts has had a reputation as being unfriendly to business," said Representative Linda Dorcena Forry, chair of the Joint Committee on Community Development and Small Business. "These public events are a great way to showcase the entrepreneurial spirit of Massachusetts. What the public often doesn't see, though, is all the work the Governor and legislature are doing to reform our laws and regulations to help small businesses emerge out of this recession. It's an ongoing process but one that will position Massachusetts to thrive in the coming years."

"We are very excited about this expansion," said Cambridge Innovation Center founder and CEO Tim Rowe. "We have been jam-packed for months now and this new space will enable us to house approximately 200 additional startup companies here at CIC."

At the event, Massachusetts Secretary of Housing and Economic Development Greg Bialecki moderated a panel of Massachusetts entrepreneurs examining the unique, rich and diverse environment that the Commonwealth offers start-up companies. Panelists included Sheila Lirio Marcelo, Founder and CEO of Care.com; Brian Halligan, CEO and Founder of HubSpot; Jesse Gossett, Partner of Emergent; Laura Fitton, Founder and CEO of oneforty.com; and Sophie Vandebroek, CTO of Xerox.

"These initiatives underscore the vibrancy of the entrepreneurial community in Massachusetts," said Michael Greeley, Chair of the New England Venture Capital Association and Massachusetts: It's All Here. "With well over 100 active venture capital firms, the VC industry is open for business and is excited to invest in a lot of new companies in the state."

Today's announcements included:

  • MassChallenge - The Massachusetts-based global startup competition unveiled its new website, branding and opportunities for entrepreneurs.
  • The Open House Series - A number of innovative Massachusetts companies will host open house receptions throughout the 90-day Start Here campaign.
  • The Commonwealth of Massachusetts, It's All Here , MassChallenge and the New England Venture Capital Association will be holding "Open Office Hours" at their respective offices at the Cambridge Innovation Center.
  • The Massachusetts Office of Small Business and Entrepreneurship will hold its annual celebration of Young Entrepreneurs honoring exceptional Massachusetts young companies on February 25 th from 6-8pm at the UMass Boston Venture Development Center and, in partnership with the Cambridge Innovation Center, will launch their Entrepreneur Speaker Tour Series to state and community colleges. The program will introduce more college graduates in Massachusetts to the idea of pursuing entrepreneurship as a career path.
  • The Massachusetts Innovation Technology Exchange Promise Awards will be awarded this summer to start-up companies whose emerging technology solutions show promise to make a significant business impact*.*
  • Venture Capitalist-backed Google Map - This unique and innovative Google map features all the venture-backed companies in Massachusetts as a data resource.

The campaign was designed in partnership with the New England Venture Capital Association, Flybridge Capital Partners, the Massachusetts Innovation Technology Exchange, MassChallenge, the Massachusetts Office of Small Business and Entrepreneurship and the Massachusetts Office of Business Development.

The Massachusetts : It's All Here marketing campaign is a public-private partnership between the Commonwealth's Department of Business Development, MassEcon, MassDevelopment and the Massachusetts International Trade Council.
 

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