Six recipients selected for second cohort of Opportunity Zone Capital Accelerator Program

DENVER – The Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT) announced today that six businesses have been selected for the second round of assistance with opportunity zone businesses investment through the Opportunity Zone Capital Accelerator Program

OEDIT partnered with the Colorado Center for Innovation for Community Capital (CC4ICC) in early May to create the new program to support business investment rather than real estate, where the majority of Opportunity Zone investments have been made. The first six business recipients were selected in July 2020. 

“We are excited by the progress we see with our premiere six program recipients and look forward to working with this group of entrepreneurs,” said Mike Landes, Opportunity Zone program director at OEDIT. “OZ business investments provide not only the capital gains savings to the investor, but also provide the working capital that is a real barrier for small businesses and low-income communities.” 

The program assistance includes help creating a pitch deck, drafting a pro forma or receiving counsel for other needs related to opportunity zone funding. In addition, CC4ICC will connect businesses with its extensive list of investors through its online portal.

The Cohort

Sou Sou House: Marcie Moore Gantz

Sou Sou House is a data-driven "early-stage nest" for creatives, placed-based businesses, and high-tech startups with a social purpose. Its "innovation” incubator is an inclusive, community-centered virtual and real-time shared workspace. Sou Sou House provides makerspaces and wrap-around support for an emerging pipeline of overlooked social entrepreneurs, creatives and freelancers based in NE Parkhill and beyond. Pronounced  “su su,” the name means “to plan,” the concept is used throughout the world and has over 200 different names ranging from country to country. It is a form of cooperative economics and collective care.

ProsperBridge: Jervis DiCicco

Money issues are the primary source of stress for most working Americans, and millions—even at high income levels—struggle every month to make ends meet.  ProsperBridge partners with employers to make financial progress accessible for every employee earning a living wage.  Whether they are struggling to buy groceries or about to take early retirement, our employee benefit provides each participant with innovative resources and a single point of contact—a Personal Prosperity Assistant—to help them eliminate financial stress and inefficiency.  And all that progress adds up to huge benefits for employers: increased productivity, better mental and physical health, and decreased turnover.

Evans Early Childhood: Roseanne Evans

Evans Early Childhood is a Colorado State Licensed child care center and preschool, serving children ages 6 weeks to 6 years. Rosie Evans and Brian Evans, a husband and wife team started the company in June 2014, both following careers in teaching.  Not only has the business created jobs for the local economy, and created more accessibility to QUALITY childcare and preschool, it has also broadened the Evans’  perspective on the incredible need for quality, accessible and affordable childcare in Morgan County. Evans Early Childhood is meeting a need for quality care in their community.

Yampa Valley Adventure Center: Franklin Moe

The Yampa Valley Adventure Center, centrally located in Craig, CO., will be Colorado's Premier Base Camp for exploring the 3.5 million acres of wondrous natural beauty of the Northwest Colorado Counties of Moffat, Routt and Rio Blanco.  They are planning their facility to include an Indoor Gun and Archery Range with Pro Shop, Indoor Climbing Center featuring interactive climbing walls, Tag Interactive Arena,  Sky Trails and Tyke Trails, Mini bowling, Mini golf, Top Golf Swing Suites, Pool Hall, Interactive Trampoline Park, Outdoor Retail, Grocery and Gift Store, Hostel, Base Camp Black Rock Grill, Yampa Valley Ice Cream, Candy & Chocolate Factory, area tours featuring Sand Wash Basin Wild Mustangs, plus a Rental Center with rentals of everything needed for your outdoor recreation enjoyment.

Campfire Ranch: Sam Degenhard

RV parks and public campgrounds haven’t evolved in over 40 years and now, new campers expect more from an outdoor experience – that’s where Campfire Ranch comes in. Campfire Ranch is building campgrounds for the experience generation. They are the hub for the next generation to gather in the outdoors, create authentic experiences, and build meaningful friendships along the way. It’s still camping, just easier. Learn more.

Col Food & Wine: Jeffrey Noffsinger

Col Food & Wine is a collaborative effort of three Colorado business owners in the hospitality industry.  Jeffrey Noffsinger, owner of Origins Wine Bar & Wood Fired Pizza in downtown Loveland, is championing an effort to create a food and wine experience in Estes Park to accommodate the growing tourism industry in the gateway community.  Partnering with Tracie Reeves-Hartman, owner of Fresh Plate Catering in Loveland, and aspiring winemaker Matthew Deem of Wild Mountain Cellars in Palisade, the trio envision a multi-dimensional facility with a restaurant, winery, small events center and catering services.