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  • Writer's pictureBen Franklin 4 PA

Investments in Innovation Keep Pa.’s Economy Growing


Media Contact: Ryan Glenn, P: 717-948-4317

State budget proposes $22 million for Ben Franklin

HARRISBURG, Pa. (Feb. 8, 2022) --- Recognizing the importance of investments in innovation to drive Pennsylvania’s new economy and sustain its growth, Gov. Tom Wolf’s 2022-23 draft spending plan proposes at least $22 million for Ben Franklin Technology Partners.

The funding, which amounts to a $2 million increase for each of the four regionally based Ben Franklin centers, is part of $32.5 million planned for the Ben Franklin Technology Development Authority (BFTDA), which funds the statewide economic development initiative and provides competitive grants to support other high-tech ventures.

“The last few years have proven the value of investing in innovation. Even amid the worst health-care crisis in generations, Ben Franklin continued its impressive history of delivering results,” said Ryan E. Glenn, Ben Franklin’s Director of Statewide Initiatives. “This budget builds on the transformative work we have done to create an entrepreneurial ecosystem that attracts and retains the brightest and most talented and promising individuals whose ideas power our economy.”

Under the governor’s proposed budget, each Ben Franklin would receive $5.5 million, totaling $22 million for the statewide initiative that supports early-stage technology firms and high-tech entrepreneurs. Ben Franklin serves all 67 counties through four centers in Pittsburgh, State College, Bethlehem and Philadelphia, with additional satellite offices across the state.

The $32.5 million proposed for BFTDA is $18 million over the current fiscal year.

“As Pennsylvania’s economy continues to rebound, sustained investment in innovation is key, especially for how competitive this field is nationally,” Glenn said. “These budget resources will help us back homegrown ventures and build on our work to target specifically and support underserved communities to foster entrepreneurship.”

Since its inception, Ben Franklin has invested in more than 4,500 technology-based companies and boosted the state’s economy by more than $25 billion, helping to generate 148,000 jobs through investments in client firms and spinoff companies in Pennsylvania.

According to the initiative’s 2020 Annual Statewide Impact Report, Ben Franklin supported 1,697 companies and helped clients create nearly 1,309 jobs while retaining 12,446 more positions. Those investments paid huge dividends, with clients generating more than $1.8 billion in revenue and securing $894 million in post-Ben Franklin financing.

Ben Franklin invests more than money alone. It surrounds clients with internal and external experts in accounting and finance, marketing, intellectual property protection, supply chain management, and other disciplines. Developed and customized over more than three decades of experience, many clients cite these high-value support services as being key factors in their eventual success.

The funding also is essential to support startups and innovative manufacturers that did not qualify for federal relief.

“Ben Franklin is united in its mission to power economic growth and improve the human condition through innovation,” Glenn said. “We look forward to working with the governor and legislators to ensure these investments create new and transformative opportunities in communities across the commonwealth.”

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