HARTSVILLE, SC (WMBF) - Three agencies have partnered to give away thousands of dollars in an effort to boost business in downtown Hartsville.
The Start-Up Hartsville program is a $12,000 incentive to help local entrepreneurs establish startup businesses, which must then open a new downtown location by October 5, 2015.
Sponsors include: the Community Foundation for a Better Hartsville, Duke Energy Center for Innovation (DECI) and Main Street Hartsville.
Businesses eligible for the competition include: ideas for new startups, franchises, relocations of existing businesses from other communities, as well as established Hartsville businesses looking to significantly expand into additional business concepts, according to officials.
The $12,000 offered to winning entries will take the form of a potentially forgivable loan, determined by the business' ability to meet all requirements of the program.
Winning businesses may receive additional benefits, including assistance with branding, marketing, advertising, online presence and promotions, as well as accounting and payroll.
According to program officials:
Applications for Start-Up Hartsville are available on the DECI website, www.decenterforinnovation.com, and will be due February 16, 2015.
A selection committee, which will include local business owners, will select six semifinalists to develop more detailed business plans. A group of three finalists will then make presentations to the committee before two winners are announced on May 14.