Ben Franklin Tech Partners is Working With the State to Get $5M Added to its 2021 Budget

For the last decade, Ben Franklin Technology Partners has been fighting for more state money.

The 35-year-old seed and early-stage capital provider for Pennsylvania tech companies faced budget slashes starting in 2008, and in 2019, the org was given $14.5 million in the state’s budget — a true 50% cut from its original allotment. The capital provider has still provided the region with the highest number of investments in the last decade, with its Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Southeastern Pennsylvania branch in the Navy Yard making 356 investments between 2010 and 2019.

But the organization is making another attempt to grab more funding in the state’s 2020-2021 budget. It announced this week that it’s working with the Department of Community and Economic Development on a proposed plan to “fuel innovation across Pennsylvania.”

The proposed change to the budget, which Gov. Tom Wolf introduced, includes $12.35 million toward “an evidence-based, statewide innovation strategy,” BFTP said in a statement. And part of that plan includes an additional $5 million directly to the organization.

The proposed $5 million would go toward an initiative to work with area colleges and universities, said Jason Bannon, BFTP’s VP of marketing and communications. He said it’s also an achievement to have the governor championing the organization and the investments it makes.

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