Albuquerque City Council Approves $1.8M for ABQid’s “Business Accelerator”

A contract with a nonprofit group called ABQid worth $1.8 million was approved through an unanimously vote by the Albuquerque City Council. The three-year contract represents a new economic-development strategy dubbed “business accelerator” which aims to help entrepreneurs and start-up companies.

A contract with a nonprofit group called ABQid worth $1.8 million was approved through a unanimous vote by the Albuquerque City Council. The three-year contract represents a new economic-development strategy dubbed “business accelerator” which aims to help entrepreneurs and start-up companies.

Entrepreneurial boot camps and mentorship programs are part of the project which might help nurture the start of fast-growing companies in Albuquerque. The funds will come from the recently created Economic Development Action Fund with money from penalties paid by companies that receive city incentives but failed to live up to their end of the contract.

“I appreciate City Council’s endorsement of an aligned vision for the changing trajectory of Albuquerque’s economy,” Mayor Richard J. Berry said in a statement. “We’re doing everything we can to cultivate an entrepreneurial mindset in our community and bring innovation to the forefront, all the while trying to improve the business environment of our city. City Council’s vote of this important project illustrates strong, widespread support for these new ideas.”

The funds won’t go to individual companies, said Deidre Firth, the city’s deputy director of economic development. Instead, the city pays ABQid to provide services with performance requirements.

ABQid’s win didn’t come through a routine request for proposals. The nonprofit submitted, on its own initiative, a proposal for city funding to the city’s economic-development council. The council then recommended approval.

“It’s a huge day for entrepreneurship in Albuquerque,” ABQid Chairman Bill Bice said in a statement. “ABQid is a perfect example of what a community can accomplish when you connect highly invested stakeholders and a city that is so strongly committed to economic reinvention. It is a major change to business-as-usual attitudes and shows a commitment to innovative new ideas.”