Fourteen Puerto Rican enterprises have been chosen to participate in the “Pymes Innovadoras” program, sponsored by the Puerto Rico Industrial Development Co.
Economic Development and Commerce Secretary Manuel Laboy, who also heads PRIDCO, said the first round of the program — which fosters the development of Innovative Small and Mid-sized Enteprises, or SMEs — will be backed by a $1.2 million investment through PRIDCO’s Special Economic Development Fund.
Participating entrepreneurs will receive up to $100,000 in incentives to help them set off business growth plans, as well as market and export their innovative products based on science and technology.
“These 14 companies have gross sales of less than $3,000,000 each and employ a total of 75 people, but the projection is to increase hiring as businesses thrive with the new economic boost for investment and development,” said Laboy during a news conference at PRIDCO.
“We believe in the potential they have to grow and continue contributing to Puerto Rico’s economic transformation,” he said, adding the initiative was launched to give support to small and medium companies using science and technology to improve the processes leading to increased production, sales and export.
“It is proven that the integration of science, innovation and technology in various sectors of manufacturing is essential to promote the development and competitiveness of every business,” said Laboy.
After evaluating a total of 71 applications received and referring to other programs those that did not meet the requirements or were incomplete, the companies selected were: the Better Ideas LLC platform; the producer of eco-friendly detergent, Cleancult LLC; the manufacturer of magnesium diboride superconducting wire for MRI machines, Cutting Edge Superconductors; public transport app, Guawa; the producer of pharmaceutical sampling equipment, IBS Caribe Inc.; the pharmaceutical that develops molecules to shrink tumors, MBQ Pharma; the corporation that develops a chemical-free water and air treatment system, NTS PR, LLC.
Also selected were: wholesaler of the Kit Innovation that diagnoses and predicts diabetic kidney disease in patients with type 2 diabetes, Omics Global Solutions; the manufacturer of agrobeads to hydrate and nourish plants, PRatian; the manufacturer of multipurpose platforms for bathtubs, Secure Bathtub; the digital ticketing platform Ticketera; WeClub PR LLC, the smart client platform that allows businesses to connect with their customer club; Bidea, a company developing a device that allows rapid detection of cervical cancer; and the creator of the GuardDV, mobile application to electronically monitor a possible violation of a domestic violence protective order.
“As part of its commitment to maintain contact with entrepreneurs, we started the Entrepreneurial Update, through which our resources provide guidance on incentives and programs available to strengthen their businesses and that it results in a business expansion and job creation,” Laboy said, adding that a new call for proposals from entrepreneurs interested in participating in the program will be opened in 2019.