WAYNESBORO — Local entrepreneurs planning to open a business in Waynesboro by Sept. 30, 2023, can enter the Grow Waynesboro Main & Wayne (GWMW) grant competition to be eligible for one of three prizes totaling $48,000, according to in a press release. .
Grow Waynesboro Main & Wayne is a free business training program designed to provide business fundamentals to individuals looking to start or expand a business in Waynesboro. After completing the eight-week program, the selected individuals will be invited to present their business plan in a live evening and compete for startup grants. The grants will be available to businesses opening a new storefront in the city’s historic district by September 30, 2023.
Aspiring entrepreneurs or existing businesses looking to expand can submit their business idea through GrowWaynesboro.com portal to 10 a.m. on January 23, 2023. Applicants will be selected to pursue an eight-week business planning class and intensive small business training program.
During this time, entrepreneurs will have the opportunity to develop their business plans, draft marketing campaigns, determine storefront locations, refine cash flow projections, and interact with local mentors and business development experts. Any type of business, including for-profit, non-profit, home business, retail stores, professional services, manufacturing and more, can pitch their idea and take advantage of the training.
“Grow Waynesboro’s approach is comprehensive,” says Greg Hitchin, the city’s director of economic development and tourism. “We encourage as many ideas and applications as possible to take advantage of this top-notch business training and startup grants to ensure the best ideas have both the capital and expertise needed to succeed in Waynesboro.”
After the entrepreneurs successfully complete the business planning course, their final ideas will compete for three grants totaling $48,000, providing the necessary capital for lease improvements, equipment, etc. Hitchin reports that in reviewing the final proposals, the jury will prioritize creating jobs, filling empty storefronts in the historic district and being able to successfully launch by September 30, 2023.
Additional information and FAQs can be found at www.GrowWaynesboro.com/main-wayne/
About Grow Waynesboro Main & Wayne
The GWMW program is made possible by a $45,000 grant from the Community Business Startup (CBL) program of the Virginia Commonwealth Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD). Waynesboro was one of three communities to receive a CBL grant as announced by Governor Youngkin on October 7th. Additional funding is provided by the City of Waynesboro, the Waynesboro Economic Development Authority and local sponsors.