Indiana Gov. Mike Pence on Thursday is scheduled to announce a plan to spend $1 billion over the next 10 years to boost innovation and entrepreneurship in the state.
The plan centers on collaboration between government, research universities, communities and the private sector.
Pence was set to publicly unveil the multi-pronged proposal at the eighth annual Innovation Showcase in Indianapolis.
The Indiana Economic Development Corp. has been directed to coordinate and oversee the strategy. The governor made an executive order that transfers the Office of Small Business and Entrepreneurship and its programs—including the Indiana Small Business Development Center, Procurement Technical Assistance Center and Small Business Ombudsman—from the Office of the Lt. Governor into the IEDC.
The proposal calls for half of the money, or $500 million, to come from the Indiana Public Retirement System. Pence said he would request that the INPRS invest a portion of its $30 billion investment fund into early-stage and mid-market Indiana companies.
He said INPRS, one of the largest 100 pension funds in the nation, would maintain oversight and due diligence to ensure investments would be made in the best interests of its members.
Another $300 million would come from continued funding of $30 million per year into the state's 21Fund, which directs investments and grants into early-stage, mid-market and high-growth companies. The fund includes programs like 21Fund Direct Investments, Indiana Angel Network Fund, Elevate Purdue Foundry Fund and the Indiana Seed Fund.
Pence said another $100 million could come from a change in the Venture Capital Investment tax credit. Pence said he would request that the General Assembly approve transferability of the tax credit to increase the accessibility of private sector funding for innovators and startup companies.
The other $100 million would come from an additional state appropriation toward innovation and entrepreneurship education programs at state universities, including Ball State University, Indiana University, IUPUI, Purdue University and the University of Notre Dame. The funding would require matching investments from the recipients.
“As a state, we have worked diligently to establish a pro-growth business climate in Indiana and our efforts are being recognized across the nation,” Pence said in a written statement. "We must build on this economic momentum and increase collaboration between educators, community leaders, industry partners and most importantly, idea generators, to further propel innovation across the Hoosier state for generations to come.”
The plans has the following goals:
— Developing Indiana’s future innovators and entrepreneurs through partnerships with secondary school programs designed to encourage interest in, teach the economics of, and outline the opportunities in innovation and entrepreneurship;
— Supporting education, research and entrepreneurial practice at Indiana’s higher education and research institutions by leveraging strategic partnerships to support and expand current innovation and entrepreneurship programs, advance research initiatives and programs like the Purdue Foundry Accelerator with embedded Entrepreneurs in Residence, and establish a system for sharing best practices across the state’s network of private and public institutions;
— Enhancing regional entrepreneurial culture and investment by supporting start-up costs and program development for co-working spaces, incubators and innovation centers, and providing matching funds for regional and community investments in start-up and scale-up companies;
— Supporting industry-driven strategic innovation and advancements by increasing support of industry initiatives, such as AgriNovus Indiana, BioCrossroads, Conexus, Energy Systems Network and TechPoint, and by spurring development of cross-sector transformational efforts, such as the Institute for Advanced Composites Manufacturing Innovation, OrthoWorx, 16 Tech and the Indiana Biosciences Research Institute;
— Accelerating investments in early-stage, mid-market and high-growth companies and encouraging further investments from private investors, communities and education and research institutes through matching funds to increase Indiana’s network of startup firms and accelerate the growth of mid-market firms;
— Expanding opportunities for small businesses by integrating resources and micro-lending initiatives to encourage local community development while developing new programs to increase opportunities for all Hoosiers to start and a grow a business.