Grow Waynesboro Main & Wayne Will Fund and Educate Local Entrepreneurs
WAYNESBORO – Local entrepreneurs planning to launch a Waynesboro business by September 30, 2023 can participate in Grow Waynesboro Main & Wayne (GWMW) training and start-up grant competition to be eligible for one of three prizes totaling $48,000. Grow Waynesboro Main & Wayne is a free business training program designed to provide a base of business fundamentals to individuals looking to start or expand a business in Waynesboro. Following the completion of the eight-week program, selected individuals will be invited to present their business plan at a live pitch night and compete for start-up grants. Grants will be available for businesses opening a new storefront in the downtown historic district by September 30, 2023.
Aspiring entrepreneurs, or existing businesses looking to expand, can submit their business idea via the GrowWaynesboro.com portal through 10am January 23, 2023. Applicants will be selected to proceed in an eight-week business planning class and intensive small business coaching program. During that time, entrepreneurs will have the opportunity to develop their business plans, draft marketing campaigns, identify storefront locations, refine cash flow projections, and network with local mentors and business development experts. Any business type, including for profit, nonprofit, home-based businesses, retail storefronts, professional services, manufacturing, and more can submit their idea and take advantage of the training.
“Grow Waynesboro is comprehensive in its approach,” says Greg Hitchin, the City’s Director of Economic Development and Tourism. “We’re encouraging as many ideas and submissions as possible to take advantage of this top-notch business training plus start-up grants to ensure that the best ideas will have both the capital and expertise they need to succeed in Waynesboro.”
Once entrepreneurs have successfully completed the business planning course, their final ideas will compete for three grants totaling $48,000, providing much needed capital for leasehold improvements, equipment, and more. Hitchin reports that a panel of judges will prioritize job creation, filling empty storefronts in the historic district, and the ability to successfully launch by September 30, 2023 in their review of the final proposals.
Additional information and FAQ can be found at GrowWaynesboro.com/main-wayne
About Grow Waynesboro Main & Wayne
The GWMW program has been made possible by a $45,000 grant from the Commonwealth of Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) Community Business Launch (CBL) Program. Waynesboro was one of three communities to receive the CBL grant as announced by Governor Youngkin on October 7, 2022. Additional funding provided by the City of Waynesboro, the Waynesboro Economic Development Authority, and local sponsors.