Five More Innovation Businesses Benefit from NJ Entrepreneur Support Program
TRENTON (July 23, 2020) – The New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) today announced that it has supported $810,000 in investments into five innovation-focused companies in the past month through the New Jersey Entrepreneur Support Program. Since April, a total of nine companies have benefited from 20 investments totaling more than $1.5 million through the program. The New Jersey Entrepreneur Support Program is designed to support New Jersey’s COVID-19-impacted small businesses in the Garden State’s innovation ecosystem.
Four of the five companies – Acuitive Technologies, InquisitHealth, MAPay, LLC, and Reti360 – are new to the New Jersey Entrepreneur Support Program. The fifth company, iSport 360, received its second investment through this program this past month.
The New Jersey Entrepreneur Support Program is a $5 million program that offers a guarantee to support repayment of an investor loan advanced for working capital purposes and is designed to encourage investors to support businesses within their portfolios during this pandemic when investor support is crucial. It provides an NJEDA guarantee of up to 80 percent for an eligible new loan or convertible note by a qualified investor into a New Jersey qualified business, not to exceed a $200,000 guarantee per company.
Investors are qualified for the program if they have already provided funding to a New Jersey company through a simple agreement for equity (SAFE), convertible note, or equity investment as of March 9, 2020 (the date of the Governor's Executive Order 103). Participating investors are not required to be New Jersey residents and can include, but are not limited to, individuals, trusts, and corporations. There will be no fees associated with the NJ Entrepreneur Support Program.
“The health of New Jersey’s economy depends largely on ongoing investment in its small, innovative companies,” said NJEDA Chief Executive Officer Tim Sullivan. “Ensuring that investors continue to inject capital into New Jersey’s innovation community during the COVID-19 pandemic is pivotal to furthering Governor Phil Murphy’s dual vision of creating the most diverse and inclusive innovation ecosystem and reclaiming the Garden State’s historic role as a leader in innovation.”
Medical device maker Acuitive Technologies, Inc., based in Allendale, Bergen County, strives to offer patients cost-effective tissue regeneration products for musculoskeletal injury or disease. The company’s focused approach on implant device innovation is aimed at improving the body’s natural ability to maintain or regrow healthy tissue through development of “resorbable” materials, which can be safely broken down and absorbed by the body over time. Acuitive closed on a $200,000 investment through the NJ Entrepreneur Support Program. The company currently has 21 employees. Acuitive Technology previously participated in the NJEDA’s Angel Investor Tax Credit Program and its Net Operating Loss Program.
“One of the best things about the NJ Entrepreneur Support Program is that it is open to out-of-state investors like me,” said Alex Ireneus Khowaylo, an investor in Acuitive Technologies who lives in Florida. “I am grateful that the program will help offset some of the risk related to investing during a pandemic.”
Health technology company InquisitHealth, based in River Edge, Bergen County, trains successful patients as ‘peer mentors’ to help those struggling with the same chronic conditions. Through its Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)-compliant technology platform, InquisitHealth deploys this distributed workforce of peer mentors to help health plans and health systems address the social determinants of health and promote healthy lifestyles. InquisitHealth’s 150+ mentors have helped thousands of patients in over 12 languages and demonstrated significant improvements in clinical outcomes. Conditions supported include diabetes, pre-diabetes, asthma, hypertension, and sickle cell anemia. The company, which has eight employees, secured $140,000 in investments through the NJ Entrepreneur Support Program. InquisitHealth previously participated in a New Jersey Founders & Funders event, obtained a $250,000 convertible note through the NJEDA’s NJ CoVest Fund and received investments from investors who participated in the state’s Angel Investor Tax Credit Program.
“Peer-to-peer mentorship is vitally important in helping patients manage their individual disease and ensuring that they don’t feel isolated, especially during a pandemic that can be overwhelmingly isolating,” said InquisitHealth CEO Ashwin Patel. “Through its funding programs and mentoring opportunities, the NJEDA has played a large role in helping us attract capital in recent months. We look forward to using this capital to continue building out our platform and helping even more patients.”
Located in Voorhees, Camden County, MAPay, LLC is a global healthcare technology firm that has deployed a transformational healthcare payment network with an expanding customer base, positive patenting positions, increasing revenues, and multiple industry stakeholder acceptance. Founded in 2018 the company has been able to create a lot of momentum recently with its contactless commerce payment solutions for healthcare.
“Kudos to the State of New Jersey and the NJEDA for working with young companies like ours to muscle through the COVID pandemic, said MAPay Founder and CEO Michael Dershem. “Knowing the NJEDA will guarantee a significant portion of the investments through the NJ Entrepreneur Support Program has helped us attract much-needed capital.”
Reti360, located in Hoboken, Hudson County, automates the residential real estate contract-through-closing journey by providing a 360-degree view of every step it takes to close on a home. The company’s platform integrates all closing participants, including real estate agents, buyers and sellers, and their teams of professional service providers— from both the home-buying and home-selling sides— in a single secure location to minimize delays, cut closing time, and reduce expenses. Reti360, which has four employees, secured a $250,000 investment through the NJ Entrepreneur Support Program.
“COVID-19 has created a volatile real estate market, so having the NJEDA guarantee a large part of investments into our company has been a tremendous asset as we speak with our investors,” said Reti360 Founder and CEO Daniel Perlman.
Technology company iSport360, based in Manalapan, Monmouth County, also closed on a $20,000 investment through the NJ Entrepreneur Support Program this past month. The company previously received a $25,000 investment through the program.
The NJ Entrepreneur Support Program complements the NJEDA’s existing suite of financial resources for early-stage technology and life sciences businesses. In addition to the Net Operating Loss and Angel Investor Tax Credit programs and the NJ CoVest Fund, this also includes NJ Ignite and the Edison Innovation Fund. Entrepreneurs can also benefit New Jersey Founders and Funders and the creation of the New Jersey Chapter of Golden Seeds, which launched last year in partnership with First Lady Tammy Murphy, as well as the incubation and intermediate lab space at the NJEDA’s New Jersey Bioscience Center.
About the New Jersey Economic Development Authority
The New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) serves as the State’s principal agency for driving economic growth. The NJEDA is committed to making New Jersey a national model for inclusive and sustainable economic development by focusing on key strategies to help build strong and dynamic communities, create good jobs for New Jersey residents, and provide pathways to a stronger and fairer economy. Through partnerships with a diverse range of stakeholders, the NJEDA creates and implements initiatives to enhance the economic vitality and quality of life in the State and strengthen New Jersey’s long-term economic competitiveness.
To learn more about NJEDA resources for businesses call NJEDA Customer Care at 609-858-6767 or visit https://www.njeda.com and follow @NewJerseyEDA on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.