CANTON, OHIO (July 15, 2011) – The City of Canton, in conjunction with ystark! (a department of the Canton Regional Chamber), is pleased to begin accepting applications for Canton Entrepreneur Launch. The new program provides grants to entrepreneurs who plan to locate new, high growth business ventures in the City of Canton. Canton Entrepreneur Launch is designed to create organic business growth by providing grants to startup businesses that have the potential to attract additional growth capital, create substantial economic impact and develop job opportunities within the Canton community. Beginning today, individuals with innovative ideas for a new business can submit an executive summary and business plan to the program at Successful applicants must be selected and approved by the Canton Entrepreneur Launch Commission in order to receive funding. Applications for this round of funding are due no later than September 30, 2011, and the combined grants awarded during this initial cycle will be up to $100,000. “I am extremely confident that the Canton Entrepreneur Launch program will be a catalyst for business development within our city,” said Mayor Healy. “The commission anticipates receiving a variety of creative new business plans and is eager to identify the most viable submissions to help them start their business in Canton.” Canton Entrepreneur Launch is the newest member of the JumpStart Entrepreneurial Network, a connected group of regional entrepreneur support organizations operating across 21 counties of Northeast Ohio. “Canton is making a bold investment in the community by investing in its entrepreneurs,” said John Dearborn, President of JumpStart. ”We’re thrilled to be a part of this exciting program as a ‘back-office’ through our role with the Ohio Third Frontier program to ensure the program has everything it needs to be successful.” The Network’s connectivity provides applicants to the Canton Entrepreneur Launch with potential access to other potential regional resources including pre-seed and seed funds, incubators and business advisors.

# # #