Innovation Mill

A new program designed to help early-stage startups is now taking applications.

Calling all innovators: The Advancement Foundation, a nonprofit business incubator, is taking applications for a three-month program designed to help new entrepreneurs hone their plans.

The program, dubbed the Innovation Mill, launched this summer with the support of a $150,000 grant awarded by the GO Virginia initiative.

The grant enables the foundation to mentor five clients per quarter. Candidates are now being considered for the fall quarter, which kicks off next month.

The Innovation Mill is targeted toward early-stage startups that have the potential to become high-growth companies. Clients will receive help doing market research, establishing proof of concept, strengthening their business plans and taking other steps to expand their operations.

Once the quarter comes to a close, the program will pair clients with other business development initiatives that can offer ongoing support and mentoring.

The overarching goal is to support the development of fledgling enterprises and help them advance to the next level, said Annette Patterson, president of the Advancement Foundation.

For more info about the Innovation Mill, visit www.theadvancementfoundation.org/innovation-mill. Entrepreneurs can apply by filling out the online client survey available there.

A detailed business prospectus isn’t necessary, and the foundation will work with applicants to help determine if the program is right for them.

Patterson said candidates for the fall quarter should complete their surveys by Aug. 20. Applications for the winter quarter also can be submitted now.

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