Region 9 Economic Development District of Southwest Colorado

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Region 9 receives $60K from USDA for SCAPE Program

November 14, 2014

The Region 9 Economic Development District of SW Colorado, Inc. has received a Rural Business Enterprise Grant (RBEG) through USDA for the Southwest Colorado Accelerator Program for Entrepreneurs (SCAPE). Region 9 has been awarded $60 thousand dollars from USDA and is the only Colorado organization to receive RBEG funds in this fiscal 2014 cycle.

The grant funding will help support the SCAPE program which offers in-depth mentoring, office space and an equity investment to help new ventures enter markets and raise capital. Since beginning in 2013, the program has graduated 6 business ventures creating 8 jobs and leveraging $465,000 in investment. The program goal is to create and develop high growth, job creating companies in Southwest Colorado.

“SCAPE is an additional tool in the tool box that identifies the emerging businesses that need intensive mentoring and capital investment to put them on the growth company track,” said Laura Lewis Marchino, assistant director of Region 9. “We greatly appreciate USDA Rural Development for their support of such an innovative project in a rural area.”

Business proposals for the next SCAPE program, which starts in January 2015 are being accepted until November 23rd. For more information about SCAPE, go to or contact SCAPE Director, Elizabeth Marsh at