In response to the pandemic and the adverse impacts on underserved communities in Pierce County, the Pierce County Council has allocated $5M of American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding to launch the Pierce County Business Accelerator. The program will be administered by the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber and will serve entrepreneurs and business owners throughout Pierce County with a focus on underserved communities to help foster innovation and create wealth- building opportunities.
The Pierce County Business Accelerator will provide direct access to business resources such as relevant training, coaching, technical assistance, and networking support to launch and grow micro businesses in Pierce County. Upon completion, participants will receive access to potential funding options, matching grant resources up to $10,000, a commercial rent stipend for one year up to $500/mo., and coaching/mentorship for one year.
Q: Are the classroom hours in-person, remote, or hybrid?
A: The program is designed to be an in-person class setting. This adds a great dynamic to the cohort experience.
Q: Can the Business Accelerator match funding for business owners that was retroactively received (i.e. early 2021)?
A: The goal is for the graduates to learn about and get funding experience through the accelerator training. Matching grant funding will be addressed through an application process at the end of the cohort training, and reviewed at that time.
Q: How many cohorts will be launched for how many participants?
A: Eight cohorts of up to 25 businesses in each cohort.
Q: What is the time commitment?
A: Each cohort session will last 6-8 weeks and includes 36-40 hours of classroom entrepreneurial training.
Q: What if I have a new or start-up business. Can I apply?
A: Yes, new businesses are welcome to apply.
Business must be physically located in Pierce County
Start-up or micro-stage business with 2019 annual revenue under $325k
(pre-revenue businesses are eligible to apply).
Business plan or business description including your stage of business, business goals, target market and growth steps
Owner/Founder bio describing related business experience
Company prepared 2019 Profit & Loss Statement/Financial Statement (if business in operation)
Company prepared 2020 Profit & Loss Statement/Financial Statement (if business in operation)
Three professional letters of reference supporting your business experience