Today, The Nantucket Island Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with ReMain Ventures, announced a new grant program has been established for local small businesses owners, to help them launch innovative responses to economic challenges, such as the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Rock Solid Fund will award micro-grants of up to $5,000 to Nantucket-based companies with a history of positive cash flow prior to the pandemic. The funds will help local business owners to accelerate innovative ideas needed to ensure their continued contribution to the stability and growth of the Nantucket economy, both short and long term.
ReMain Ventures will provide $20,000 to seed the fund. The chamber will administer the fund through its Nantucket Island Center for Entrepreneurship (NICE), with the first grants to be awarded by the end of this calendar year. This sponsorship is part of ReMain Venture’s generous history of supporting the island’s tradition of independence, innovation and entrepreneurship through unique programming, including NICE and the Chamber’s “Keep the Rock Solid” business support initiative.
“We understand the importance of cash flow in today’s uncertain climate and are excited to see the innovative ideas proposed by some of our island’s most successful small business owners,” said Cecil Jensen, executive director of ReMain Ventures. “It is our hope that through this sponsorship, we will encourage other Nantucket investors to help support Nantucket’s economic lifeblood – it’s small business community – by contributing to this fund.”
“The Rock Solid Fund is perfectly aligned with the central mission of the Nantucket Island Chamber of Commerce, to foster the economic development of the island through the support of local small businesses” said Alicia Carney, chairman of the chamber board. “We are thrilled to be able to extend this support to now include cash grants to for-profit businesses for the first time in the chamber’s history.”
Since March, the chamber has been actively responding to the COVID-19 pandemic by offering educational and informational programming to the entire island business community, including KeepTheRockSolid.com and related programming offered through NCTV18 and WACK FM/True Island Digital. The Chamber has also offered business owners one-on-one consulting sessions to address specific needs, through the NICE program.
Additional information, including eligibility criteria and the application form, can be found on NantucketChamber.org/Rock-Solid-Fund. Applications are due by Friday, Dec. 11, 2020.