Pennsylvania Makes $3.5 Million Investment in Early-Stage Tech Companies

quantum computerImage by Pete Linforth

PENNSYLVANIA — Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) Acting Secretary Rick Siger this week announced that Pennsylvania state is set to catalyze innovation and drive economic growth, as a pair of Pennsylvania venture capital firms secure $3.5 million in funding through the Ben Franklin Technology Development Authority (BFTDA). The pair of firms, which specialize in investing in early-stage technology companies, is now ready to spur the growth of the thriving tech ecosystem in Pennsylvania.

“This funding is a crucial component in creating opportunities for early-stage technology companies to grow right here in Pennsylvania,” said Acting Secretary Siger. With one of the world’s largest concentrations of intellectual capital and world-renowned research institutions, Pennsylvania remains a hub of innovation on a global scale. The ongoing success of early-stage technology companies in the Commonwealth is a testament to the vibrant tech culture fostered here.

“DCED is proud to work with the BFTDA to provide funding to companies at the cutting edge of industries that drive our economy forward. Investments like these are key to the future of Pennsylvania,” continued Siger.

The BFTDA awarded $2.5 million on behalf of Activate Ventures III, LP, (Activate) a Bethlehem-based fund that will target investments of up to $1-5 million in approximately 30 early-stage technology companies, with an emphasis on healthcare-related software businesses led by tenured entrepreneurs.

Activate will be led by a group of investors including Managing Partners Glenn Bressner, and Todd Pietri, formerly of Milestone Venture Partners. They will be joined by Pietri’s former Milestone Partner, Edwin A. Goodman and fellow Bethlehem venture capitalist, Jeff Davidson.

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BFTDA also awarded $1 million on behalf of Global Opportunity Pennsylvania GP II, LLC, (GO.PA) a Philadelphia-based fund that will target investments of up to $2-7 million in roughly 20 early-stage technology companies. This fund will involve a collaboration among the Ben Franklin Technology Partners offices statewide and as such, will draw on opportunities from around the Commonwealth.

GO.PA is being formed by Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Southeastern Pennsylvania (BF-SEP) as a wholly-owned subsidiary. BF-SEP is staffed by 32 individuals, including seven investment professionals. Strategically, the fund will be venture-growth oriented. The team will focus on providing follow-on financing in the most promising Ben Franklin Technology Partners-backed companies.

As one of the oldest and most emulated state technology development programs in the nation, the BFTDA was established to promote an entrepreneurial business environment, advance technology innovation, and create a technology-ready workforce.

The mission of the Ben Franklin Technology Development Authority is to encourage and coordinate programs and investments, which advance the competitiveness of Pennsylvania’s companies and universities in the global economy.

Governor Shapiro and his Administration are committed to growing Pennsylvania’s economy so that it works for everyone. For more information about his commitment to workers, businesses, and our economy, visit the Governor’s website.

For more information about the Department of Community and Economic Development, visit the DCED website.

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