States – Colorado

Colorado Resources

Venture Capital authority (VCA)  

Katie Woslager
Senior Manager – Advanced Industries
Colorado Office of Economic Development & International Trade
1625 Broadway, Suite 2700
Denver, CO 80202
(303) 892-8760
katie.woslager@state.co.us 

Purpose of Initiative

The VCA is a venture capital funding program designed to fill a gap in private capital markets and provide seed and early stage capital investments in Colorado companies with the potential for rapidly scaling their businesses. The managing partner, HCV, has the final decision-making authority as to whether to invest in such business.

  • This venture capital program provides funding for seed or early-stage investments in qualified businesses or qualified rural businesses.
  • 50% of the funding is available to statewide businesses; 25% to rural businesses and 25% to businesses in distressed urban communities.
  • The managing partner (High Country Venture-HCV) reviews funding deals and makes investments in selected businesses throughout Colorado. HCV can fund businesses by using debt, equity, or debt with a conversion option into equity.

Eligibility

Businesses must meet certain eligibility requirements to receive VCA funding, including the following:

  • The business must be headquartered and have principal business operations in Colorado
  • The business must be a small business concern as described in the small business size regulations of the SBA
  • The business must not be predominantly engaged in:
  • Professional services provided by accountants, doctors, or lawyers
  • Banking or lending
  • Real estate development
  • Insurance
  • Oil and gas explorations
  • Direct gambling activities
  • The businesses must be able to supply all the information and certifications requested by the managing partner needed to comply with the VCA statute, limited partnership agreement, policies and procedures.

Application Process

Initially a business should contact HCV, the managing partner, to inquire about submitting its information for consideration. HCV can be reached at (303) 381-2638 or info@highcountryventure.com 

The managing partner will then review the information submitted and decide if it will proceed with further analysis of the business. If the managing partner is interested in making an investment in the business, it will submit information to OEDIT for a compliance review.

Award Details

The funding parameters are negotiable between the fund manager and the business. The funding range by the fund manager is generally between $250,000 and $3,375,000. The fund manager targets an individual investment size between $500,000 and $2,000,000.  The fund manager may partner with other funding institutions if needed (such as banks, OEDIT, Business Loan Funds and/or other venture capital funds).

Certified Capital Companies Program (CAPCOs)

John Reece
Business Investments
Colorado Office of Economic Development & International Trade
1625 Broadway, Suite 2700
Denver, CO 80202
(303) 892-3840
john.reece@state.co.us 

Purpose of Initiative

This venture capital program was funded in April of 2002, with the primary purpose being to provide assistance in the formation of new businesses and the expansion of existing businesses that create jobs in the State by providing funds to invest in Colorado businesses. This program encourages new business development and expansions of businesses by making a $75 million statewide pool available for investment statewide throughout Colorado and a $25 million rural pool available for investment in designated rural counties in Colorado.

The CAPCOs can fund the businesses by using debt, equity, or debt with a conversion option into equity. Once the business is determined to be generally eligible under the CAPCO statute and regulation, the CAPCOs have the final decision making authority as to whether to invest in such business.

Eligibility

Businesses must meet certain requirements to be eligible, including:

  • The business must be headquartered and have principal business operations in Colorado;
  • The business must be a small business concern as described in the small business size regulations of the SBA; and
  • The business must not be predominantly engaged in:
  1. Professional services provided by accountants, doctors, or lawyers;
  2. Banking or lending;
  3. Real estate development;
  4. Insurance;
  5. Oil and gas explorations;
  6. Direct gambling activities;
  7. Making loans to or investing in a CAPCO or an affiliate of a CAPCO or insurance company.

Application Process

Initially a business should contact any or all of the CAPCOs to inquire about submitting their information to the CAPCO for consideration. The CAPCO will then review the information submitted and decide if it will proceed with further analysis of the business. If the CAPCO is interested in investing in the business, it will submit a determination statement of the business to the OEDIT for a compliance review. OEDIT will generally have 10 business days to determine whether the investment and the business meet the applicable eligibility requirements. If approved, the CAPCO will have six months to make the investment before the approval is voided.

Award Details

The funding range by the CAPCOs is generally between $100,000 and $3,300,000. The CAPCOs may consider requests for less than $100,000 on a case-by-case basis.

Updated March 2018, Kristin Stiner

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