Dream Big Grow Here Business Grant Program Announces 30 Finalists

Dream Big Grow Here Business Grant Program Announces 30 Finalists

The University of Northern Iowa Regional Business Center has announced 30 finalists in the Dream Big Grow Here business grant program. A pitch off event held in conjunction with EntreFEST is scheduled to take place during the day of Thursday, May 21st in Iowa City to determine the six industry winners of $5,000.  These six will then compete in an additional pitch off that evening for the $10,000 grand prize business grant.

During the online portion of the grant program, the Dream Big Grow Here website accumulated 1.3 million pageviews. The site attracted over 100,000 total users, roughly half from Iowa.  The other half came from every state in the United States.  In addition to the online traffic, the web portal logged 75,665 votes and 2,700 comments of support for Iowa small business owners all across the state.

“We are proud to have such a successful program that really highlights our tremendous Iowa business community to a national audience,” stated program lead Rob Williams. “In the following months leading up to the pitch off at EntreFEST, we will be working with every entrant in the program to help each of them fulfill their business startup or expansion dreams.  After reviewing each of our 119 dream applications, I can say without hesitation that Iowa is in good hands with all of these innovators and entrepreneurs.”

The finalists by each industry category are as follows:

Ag Innovation, sponsored by Renew Rural Iowa


Manufacturing/Bioscience/IT, sponsored by VentureNet Iowa


Professional Services


Dream Big Grow Here is made possible through sponsorship by a mix of private and public sector agencies, including the University of Northern IowaIowa Farm Bureau Renew Rural Iowa, Advance IowaVentureNet IowaIowa Bankers AssociationVeridian Credit Union, and IASourceLink. Dream Big Grow Here is a program of UNI Business and Community Services.

For more information about the Dream Big Grow Here program, visit the Dream Big Grow Here business grant homepage.

Content contributed by Rob Williams, Dream Big Grow Here program lead.”

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