CAPE CANAVERAL, FL. (October 11, 2012) – Space Florida received a Silver Excellence in Economic Development Award for the Igniting Innovation (I2) Capital Acceleration Showcase in the category of “Special Event for Communities with Populations of 500,000+” from the International Economic Development Council (IEDC).
The honor was presented at an awards ceremony on Tuesday, October 2, during the IEDC Annual Conference, which was held September 30 – October 3, 2012 in Houston, Texas.
"We recognize Space Florida for creating innovative and successful strategies to promote economic development in this period of global recovery,” said Jay Moon, IEDC chair. “Our awards honor organizations and individuals for their efforts in creating positive change in communities. Space Florida demonstrates that they are at the forefront of the economic development profession and are using cutting-edge, effective practices that can be replicated in other communities."
The first annual Igniting Innovation (I2) Capital Acceleration Showcase was a cooperative project between Space Florida and the Technological Research and Development Authority (TRDA), an economic development organization focused on the incubation of high-tech businesses. The project was funded by a U.S. Economic Development Administration grant awarded to Space Florida to showcase Florida-based companies in the Aerospace/Aviation; Biotech/Life Science; Clean and Alternative Energy; Defense/Homeland Security; and IT/Telecommunications sectors. Based on several criteria including a strong market need, investment readiness and a sound business model, 20 companies (out of 70+ applicants) were selected to be mentored by industry coaches representing a range of business sectors and professional investment expertise. In September 2011, investors from throughout the U.S. traveled to Florida’s Space Coast to hear investment pitches by these companies. To date, seven participating companies have received funding or investment term sheets totaling more than $50 million. Space Florida also awarded $100,000 to one of the presenting companies.
“We are thrilled to receive this recognition and hope that the I2 Capital Acceleration Showcase will be viewed as an best practice that other communities can model similar programs by,” said Space Florida President and CEO Frank DiBello. “Finding innovative ways to bring entrepreneurs and investors together in one location will continue to be a focus for us, as we look to expand Florida’s high-tech footprint.”
IEDC's Excellence in Economic Development Awards recognize the world’s best economic development programs and partnerships, marketing materials, and the year’s most influential leaders. These awards honor organizations and individuals for their efforts in creating positive change in urban, suburban, and rural communities.
About Space Florida: Space Florida was created to strengthen Florida’s position as the global leader in aerospace research, investment, exploration and commerce. As Florida’s spaceport authority and aerospace development organization, we are committed to attracting and expanding the next generation of space industry businesses. With its highly trained workforce, proven infrastructure and unparalleled record of achievement, Florida is the ideal location for aerospace businesses to thrive – and Space Florida is the perfect partner to help them succeed. www.spaceflorida.gov.
About the International Economic Development Council: The International Economic Development Council (IEDC) is the world’s largest independent non-profit membership and research organization devoted exclusively to the field of economic development. IEDC helps economic development professionals create high-quality jobs, develop vibrant communities and improve the quality of life in their regions. Serving more than 4,400 members, IEDC provides a diverse range of services including conferences, professional development and certification, publications, research, advisory services, and legislative tracking. Visit www.iedconline.org. Media Contact:
Tina Lange, APR