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Economic Development

Golden Seeds to Increase Funding for Women-Led Startups

The New Jersey Economic Development Authority approved a proposal to organize a New Jersey chapter of Golden Seeds, a national angel investor network dedicated to investing in women-led startup companies. The collaboration between First Lady Tammy Murphy’s office, EDA and Golden Seeds will advance Gov. Phil Murphy’s efforts to make New Jersey the “State of Innovation” by providing new funding sources and mentorship opportunities for female entrepreneurs.

“The partnership that we have created with Golden Seeds is a critical step toward building a robust New Jersey innovation economy that reflects and supports our state’s diverse workforce,” said First Lady Tammy Snyder Murphy. “Repeated studies show companies that include women in top management positions increase their margins and produce more patents than teams with solely male leaders. Creating new opportunities for women entrepreneurs to connect with mentors and receive funding will lead to outsize economic growth that creates good jobs and benefits communities throughout the Garden State.”

Founded in 2005, Golden Seeds has a 14-year track record of successfully supporting women-led businesses. Nationally, it has more than 275 members that include credentialed investors from various locations, sectors, and backgrounds. The New Jersey chapter of the organization will be the seventh, joining established Golden Seeds chapters in Atlanta, Boston, Dallas, Houston, New York City, and Silicon Valley.

“New Jersey’s highly skilled workforce and strong network of investors and entrepreneurs makes it an ideal place for a new Golden Seeds chapter,” said Loretta McCarthy, Managing Partner at Golden Seeds. “We are excited to partner with Governor Murphy and the EDA to provide capital and mentoring for women-led businesses that will play a key role in revitalizing and growing New Jersey’s innovation economy.”

The EDA’s partnership with Golden Seeds supports Governor Murphy’s efforts to create a diverse innovation ecosystem in New Jersey by increasing the availability of angel capital for women-led businesses and mentoring opportunities for women businesses leaders. It will also foster a strong, cohesive angel investing community in New Jersey by bringing members together to identify investment opportunities, conduct due diligence, and support companies in which they choose to invest. The partnership builds on the EDA’s long history of partnering with funding groups such as Jumpstart NJ Angel Network and Tech Launch to bring more capital to New Jersey’s Innovation economy.

The chapter’s establishment coincides with a recent expansion of the New Jersey Angel Investor Tax Credit, which provides refundable tax credits against the New Jersey corporation business or gross income tax for qualified investments in emerging technology businesses with a physical presence in New Jersey and that conduct research, manufacturing, or technology commercialization in the state. The recently-enacted legislation increases the base tax credit available through this program from 10 percent to 20 percent, with an additional 5 percent credit available for investments in businesses located in qualified opportunity zones or low-income communities or that are certified minority- or women-owned businesses. This second provision will be particularly important in attracting investors to the New Jersey Golden Seeds chapter and supporting women-owned startups in the state.

Throughout the process of forming the New Jersey Golden Seeds Chapter, the EDA will coordinate with the New York City chapter of the organization to reach out to potential members, host training sessions on a series of angel investing topics, and organize monthly office hours at sites around the state where female entrepreneurs will be able to get advice from investors. Once the chapter is established, the EDA will transition leadership to group members.

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