OEDIT 2023 Wrapped


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14 Ways OEDIT has Supported Coloradans

We close out 2023 with a look back on the work done to empower Coloradans to thrive in our economy. Let’s unwrap 14 ways OEDIT has worked hard to make Colorado work for all. Why 14? OEDIT has 14 divisions, we’re one of 14 state agencies, we support 14 major industry sectors, and we have the most fourteeners in the country. You might say 14 is our lucky number.

  1. 27 Growing Companies Will Create 7,958 New Jobs Colorado
    We facilitated 27 companies to choose Colorado for expansion, projected to create up to 7,958 new jobs. How did we do it? We highlighted how Colorado has one of the best workforces in the nation, with the second highest share of adults with an advanced degree (42%). Our state is centrally located, allowing for easy access to the world, and it’s naturally beautiful.
  2. One Impactful Arts Project is Poised to Create Nearly 600 Housing Units
    Through the Community Revitalization Program, we’ve supported the development of 59 mixed-use development projects in creative districts, main streets, and neighborhood commercial centers across Colorado. Grants were awarded to projects that combine several uses, such as creative industry workforce housing, commercial spaces, performance space, community gathering spaces, child care centers, and retail partnerships. This work will support the creation of 598 housing units, including over 500 workforce and affordable housing units—helping artists feel more secure in their housing, produce more artistic creations and plan for the future.
  3. Colorado Became the Eighth North American Michelin Guide Destination
    The Michelin Guide has come to Colorado! Our state is now home to five Michelin starred restaurants, nine Bib Gourmand restaurants, four Green Star restaurants, and an additional 30 other recommended restaurants. These accolades are expected to be a big draw for international travelers, and help to grow local economies across the state.
  4. The 99.5% of Small Businesses is Our Economic Backbone
    We supported the creation of 221 new businesses, helped small businesses increase sales by more than $83 million, and served over 14,000 clients through the Small Business Development Center Network. More than forty minority-serving organizations were supported and 105 new minority businesses were created with support from the Minority Business Office. The Cannabis Business Grant helped to create or retain 190 jobs and create 55 new businesses. And 21 businesses converted to employee ownership.
  5. Colorado’s Quantum Industry Was Recognized as a Global Leader with the Potential to Create New Technologies and New Jobs
    Colorado was recognized by the U.S. Economic Development Administration as a regional Technology Hub with a focus on quantum. We’re only one of two states with a robust quantum industry; we have the most jobs and most companies in quantum, and four Colorado scientists have received Nobel Prizes in Physics for research that advanced our understanding of physics today. This new designation positions the Elevate Quantum Tech Hub to apply for $75 million in funding to support its work to advance the field of quantum and grow a diverse ecosystem that offers jobs for Coloradans of all backgrounds. Quantum jobs have an average salary of $125,000 and nearly half do not require a degree.
  6. Colorado Comes to Life 365
    Visitors took 90 million trips to Colorado to see all of the amazing things our great state offers. Our tourism sector is responsible for the gain of 15,700 jobs, so that direct travel-generated spending now creates 176,800 jobs across Colorado.
  7. Coach Prime & HGTV Filmed in Colorado, Helping to Support 633 Colorado Hires in the Film Industry
    Eleven new film, tv, and media projects were made in Colorado! Of these, Amazon’s Coach Prime filmed in Boulder and HGTV’s Home Town Takeover filmed in Fort Morgan. All of these projects are responsible for 633 Colorado hires and generating over $60 million in economic activity for the state.
  8. Grant Funding Supported Over 100 Outdoor Industry Jobs
    We provided almost $2 million in grant funding for outdoor recreation industry businesses and nonprofits, helping to hire and retain over 100 full-time and part-time positions. Organizations that benefited from this grant produce bike packing gear, offer jet boating experiences, hand make skis and so much more. These grants have contributed to increasing access to the outdoors particularly for those who have historically faced barriers to outdoor recreation.
  9. Advanced Industries Grants Helped Fund 75 New Jobs—and Cool New Technologies 
    The advanced industries account for 30% of Colorado’s economy, and last year, 115 Advanced Industry Accelerator program grants supported 69 existing businesses and helped to create 8 new businesses. These grant recipients are developing future technologies and discovering new breakthroughs such as hydrogen for clean combustion, simulating the sensation of touch from extended reality content, to novel wound care and disease diagnosis, and more. This work resulted in 75 jobs created and 178 jobs retained.
  10. Launched Opportunity Now Program Providing Educational Opportunities for Up to 10,000 Coloradans So Far
    Opportunity Now helps Coloradans gain the skills to access in-demand, good-paying jobs. The program has so far awarded $27 million in grants to 46 grantees representing all OEDIT regions and corners of our state, with many grants supporting BIPOC, women, and Veteran workers. Current grantees represent 145 business and 78 education partners in 38 industries, expected to serve nearly 10,000 Coloradans.
  11. 3D Printing, Robots, and More, Supported the Creation of 2,000 Housing Units
    To address the housing shortage in Colorado we launched the Innovative Housing Incentive Program (IHIP). Homes are traditionally built on location which can extend the build time and increase costs. This program supports manufacturers who build homes in new and unique ways. Think robots, 3-D printing, repurposing timber from fire prone forests, and more. This year we awarded nine IHIP grants directly incentivizing the creation of 2,000 attainable housing units across Colorado and contributing to the recipients’ work to create more than 7,500 units over the next three years.
  12. Thousands of Miles Traveled Around Rural Colorado
    Did you know that 54 of our 64 counties are non-metro and rural counties? Ensuring our rural communities are supported is a big priority for us. This is why our rural team traveled 35,000 miles around rural Colorado meeting with economic and community leaders, residents, and more to listen to the needs of these communities and connect them to state resources. That adds up to traveling around the world 1.4 times.
  13. Enterprise Zones Train 31,000 Employees and Create 6,259 Net New Jobs
    The Colorado legislature created the Enterprise Zone (EZ) Program to encourage development in economically distressed areas of the state. The 16 designated enterprise zones have high unemployment rates, low per capita income, or slow population growth. So it’s exciting to see that 6,276 businesses certified for EZ tax credits, supporting their efforts to complete projects that will help grow their local economies. Additionally, 19 local economic developers provided training to improve job skills of more than 31,000 employees across the 16 zones, and helped businesses to create 6,259 net new jobs.
  14. Rural Jump-Start Supports 157 New Hires
    31 counties have formed Rural Jump-Start zones through a program that incentivizes new businesses to start in or move to rural, economically distressed counties in Colorado. Rural Jump-Start companies produce soy products including tofu for restaurants across the state, manufacture heavily durable smartphone cases, provide commercial driving training courses and more. Last year, the Rural Jump Start program supported 157 new hires across rural Colorado.

That’s a wrap on the 14 ways we’ve worked to make Colorado a place where everyone can thrive. This year has seen the increase of thousands of new jobs, providing training for over 40,000 people, breaking down barriers for underrepresented groups and more. It is our north star to ensure we are creating an economy that works for all Coloradans. See how we do in 2024 when we release our OEDIT 2024 Wrapped.