Archive for February, 2018

Initiative boosts Atlanta entrepreneur jobs

Tuesday, February 27th, 2018

A new initiative is helping to boost Atlanta entrepreneur jobs.

The City of Atlanta Women’s Entrepreneurship Initiative (WEI) announced its 2018-19 cohort of 15 entrepreneurs. As the nation’s only city-funded incubator for women business owners, WEI provides an ecosystem of educational resources, access to funding assistance and mentorship to women business owners.

“I am proud of the results that have been achieved through our Women’s Entrepreneurship Initiative. These inspirational women are helping foster economic growth in Atlanta, and are worthy of our admiration and support,” said Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms. “With support from WEI, I am confident their journeys will continue to be successful and will serve as motivation for other aspiring women entrepreneurs to pursue their own dreams.”

With businesses ranging from innovative information technology solutions to niche retail products, the group of promising, Atlanta-based woman entrepreneurs will participate in WEI’s 15-month program, which is housed in a unique workspace in downtown Atlanta’s iconic Flatiron Building, the city’s oldest standing skyscraper. The WEI program is designed to foster their growth and sustainability through business education, financial literacy, access to mentors and consultants, and peer-to-peer networking.

“The 2018-19 class is filled with talented, ambitious and proven business leaders, each with a vision for success that WEI is proud to help empower,” said Founding Executive Director Theia Smith. “They represent the contribution women are bringing to the economic growth of Atlanta as innovators, problem solvers and job creators.”

An idea sparked by former Mayor Kasim Reed during his first mayoral campaign, WEI was launched to align entrepreneurial opportunities for women in Atlanta with the City’s mission of elevating and strengthening its economic development efforts. WEI’s inaugural class, which graduated from the program in September 2017, have benefitted from the incubator’s support and are helping bolster Atlanta’s economy. Nine have grown their businesses to be able to hire their first, or an additional employee. Six WEI entrepreneurs have collaborated with a fellow entrepreneur, to create a new business opportunity; and one has scaled her 2017 revenue beyond $1.1 million.

Tax credits create Atlanta jobs

Tuesday, February 27th, 2018

A new investment into tax credits is helping boost Atlanta jobs.

Invest Atlanta has received $60 million in New Markets Tax Credit allocation from the U.S. Department of the Treasury to provide gap financing for economic development projects that help create jobs and revitalize neighborhoods in Atlanta.

This latest award is the sixth given to Invest Atlanta in the last 10 years and will be used by Atlanta Emerging Markets, Inc. (AEMI), Invest Atlanta’s New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) entity, to fund catalytic development projects in low-income areas.

“My Administration is committed to increasing prosperity for all through our city’s economic development efforts, while steadfastly working to improve equity and affordability in our communities,” said Mayor Bottoms. “This latest New Markets Tax Credit award is one of the largest in the country and will provide additional funding to stimulate investment for residents in parts of our city where greater economic opportunity is needed most.”

Congress established the NMTC program in 2000 to attract investment to areas with low median income and high unemployment.

The NMTC program takes private equity contributed by investors and turns it into gap financing for redevelopment projects. Investors receive non-refundable tax credits in exchange for an equity investment in a local project that demonstrates meaningful community impact. This year, a total of 230 community development entities applied for $3.5 billion of available NMTC allocation and 73 organizations, about 31 percent, received funding.

“We are pleased to see the Treasury Department continues to recognize the impact New Markets Tax Credits are making on economic revitalization and job creation in the City of Atlanta,” said Dr. Eloisa Klementich, President and CEO of Invest Atlanta. “Invest Atlanta continues to receive higher award amounts with each application, which has enabled us, through AEMI, to invest in 22 projects since 2010 that have created more than 3,250 jobs in areas that are often overlooked by conventional capital markets.”

New square puts spotlight on tech jobs in Atlanta

Tuesday, February 27th, 2018

A new square is placing the spotlight on tech jobs in Atlanta.

Anthem, Inc. has a new technology center in Midtown Atlanta’s Tech Square.  When opened in 2020, the 352,000 square-foot state-of-the-art structure will house approximately 3,000 multi-disciplinary IT professionals dedicated to simplifying the health care experience for consumers and care providers, improving quality of care, and lowering health care costs.  Anthem, Inc. is one of the nation’s leading health benefits companies.

“Atlanta is rich with technology talent, and we are excited to take this next step in creating a hub for our IT organization here with a contemporary and inspiring space for current and future Anthem IT professionals,” said Tom Miller, Anthem senior vice president of innovation and chief information officer. “Located in the technology epicenter of Atlanta, the collaborative environment will enable Anthem’s IT team to more quickly turn health care ideas into real-time solutions and develop innovative tools and resources that will make it easier and more convenient for consumers to manage their health and wellbeing.”

The architectural firm, John Portman & Associates, designed the building and provided Anthem the opportunity to create spaces that support its progressive and collaborative work style.

More than 14,000 square-feet of terrace area will allow for an inviting green space, bringing the outside in, to support health and wellness. As part of the LEED- and Fitwel-certified design, Anthem placed an emphasis on energy and water efficiency, indoor environmental quality, and design that encourages an active work environment through indoor and outdoor spaces.

“Portman is delighted to partner with Anthem to create another significant development in Midtown Atlanta. The Anthem Technology Center will complement Coda and further cement Midtown as the focal destination for businesses that are focused on collaboration, recruitment, and positioning,” said Ambrish Baisiwala, chief executive officer of Portman Holdings.