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Business Innovation Challenge - Now Accepting Applications, Deadline November 20th!

The program: For the 2017 round of challenge grants, we will award up to $8,000 in grants to existing businesses in Over-the-Rhine with an innovative idea for how to spend it, and maintaining a focus on:

·         Growing new products and services
·         Keeping up with consumer trends

More about the Program: Administered by the OTR Chamber's Business Attraction and Retention Committee, four rounds of applications since the program inception in 2014 with the fall 2017 round being the first to expand the entire grant(s) amount to a total up to $8,000. All existing businesses located in Over-the-Rhine (as defined by the City of Cincinnati) are eligible.

Innovation ideas can include:
  • Focus on expanding your business: includes equipment, promotions, or addition of an online sales platform.
  • Enhance your customer experience, incorporate national trends
  • Help fund a creative project or service

Requirements:
  • Submit a one-page application (or a one minute video) to info@otrchamber.com explaining your vision with words, graphics, charts, or anything you’d like.
  • Include the total budget of your project and the gap in funding, if applicable.
  • Include your business name and contact information.
  • A $25 application fee is required ($35 for Non Members). All application fees will be rolled into future Innovation Challenge grants.
  • All existing businesses located in Over-the-Rhine (as defined by the City of Cincinnati) are eligible.
  • Winning applicant will be required to have or obtain a current Over-the-Rhine Chamber of Commerce membership.

In its first three rounds of applications, more than 40 businesses applied total. The Committee evaluated each application and considered innovation, business growth, execution, and impact. The following businesses have been awarded: MOTR Pub, Cincy Shirts, The Garage OTR / Segway, Steam Whistle Letterpress, Daisy Mae, We Have Become Vikings, MORTAR, Lucca Laser Work + Shop, and Findlay Kitchen.