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NY MEP announces nearly $1 million in COVID recovery project funding for manufacturers


Fri, Mar 5th 2021 01:00 pm

Four centers within the New York Manufacturing Extension Partnership (NY MEP) network have launched competitive grant programs designed to help manufacturers solve challenges created by COVID-19, emerge from the crisis more resilient and adaptable, and prepare for future emergencies.

Combined, the four programs will award nearly $1 million to manufacturing and technology companies in New York. The programs, which are open to companies in all regions, include:

√ Personal protective equipment fund, led by ITAC

√ Supply chain grant program, led by the Center for Economic Growth (CEG)

√ “Next Generation” grant program, led by the Manufacturing & Technology Enterprise Center (MTEC)

√ “Manufacturing Reimagined” fund, led by FuzeHub

The personal protective equipment fund, managed by ITAC, the New York City regional NY MEP center, will award a total of $250,000 to companies in two phases: Phase 1 focuses on those companies working to extend the lifespan of personal protective equipment (PPE); and phase 2 will support the scaling needs of select PPE manufacturers across New York. StateĀ­-based manufacturers or technology companies will receive a maximum $10,000 grant.

“Maintaining a reliable PPE supply has allowed businesses to reopen and the economy to begin recovering. The next step is to ensure resilience,” ITAC Executive Director Kinda Younes said. “Supporting the growth of PPE companies, and investing in long-lifespan materials and products that extend the viability of PPE is a wise investment – and New York is leading the way.”

The Supply Chain Grant Program, managed by CEG, the Capital Region’s NY MEP center, will award a total of $200,000 toward projects that help manufacturers address business challenges caused by pandemic-related supply chain disruptions.

Up to 20 manufacturers with facilities in New York will receive a maximum $10,000 grant, which will help recipients take steps to optimize their supply chains, explore new markets and products, identify new customers and implement processes to become more competitive. Funding may be used to offset the costs of consultants, engineering assistance, implementation, training and project-related materials.

“Even the best supply chains were tested by COVID-19. Some to their breaking point, as the pandemic exposed weaknesses such as overreliance on single-source or overseas suppliers,” CEG Senior Vice President Michael Lobsinger said. “It provided invaluable lessons in supply chain management, and the strategies that emerge will give our state’s manufacturers an edge in times of calm and crisis.”

The “Next Generation” grant program, managed by MTEC, the Mid-Hudson regional NY MEP center, will award a total of $350,000 to companies that need help optimizing their operations for the post-pandemic era.

Recipients will receive up to $10,000 in services to ensure they are operating safely, effectively and efficiently in a virtual business environment. MTEC and its partners will help identify ways to improve operations as well as opportunities to introduce new technologies or processes. The program’s areas of focus are lean manufacturing, cybersecurity, quality and engineering.

“Some companies need help adjusting to this new way of doing business. Our goal is to get them up to speed and connect them with services they need,” said Alexis Wilson, MTEC project manager, virtual assessments and assistance.

The “Manufacturing Reimagined” fund, managed by FuzeHub, the statewide NY MEP center, will award a total of $170,000 toward projects that align with COVID-19-related recovery efforts.

Recipients will receive a maximum of $10,000 in technical assistance from a NYSTAR Innovation Network organization. Eligible projects will help manufacturers manage challenges created by COVID-19, emerge from the crisis more resilient and adaptable, and prepare for future emergencies. To qualify, applicants must attend one of FuzeHub’s “Manufacturing Reimagined” workshops or webinars.

“The resourcefulness of New York state’s manufacturing community has been nothing short of amazing. This is our opportunity not just to respond to the crisis, but also to innovate – to plan, pivot, and prepare for the years ahead,” FuzeHub Executive Director Elena Garuc said.

The four grant programs are part of NY MEP’s larger COVID-19 recovery initiative. Learn more here.

The New York Manufacturing Extension Partnership is a network of 11 organizations that provide growth and innovation services to small and mid-sized manufacturers in every corner of the state to help them create and retain jobs, increase profits, and save time and money. Supported through a combination of federal and state funding, the NY MEP is part of the National Institute of Standards and Technology's Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership and overseen by Empire State Development’s Division of Science, Technology and Innovation (NYSTAR). In 2019, the NY MEP created or retained 5,275 manufacturing jobs and generated $992 million in company cost savings, new investments and increased or retained sales. For more information on NY MEP, visit www.newyorkmep.org.

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