Business conditions that make our state unique…
Here, small means strong:
- GDP and economic stability: Although Vermont’s GDP is small, its economy is stable with the highest overall credit ratings within New England (as of September 2017)– and the enemy of any entrepreneur is uncertainty.
- Population and access to government resources: Competition in hubs like New York and Boston mean it’s difficult for startups to reach key government officials. The more intimate business environment in Vermont allows easier access to regulatory bodies and the statewide assistance programs listed below.
- Business networks and collaboration: The intimate nature of Vermont’s startup community lends itself to a strong network and an overarching community that supports entrepreneurs – with less rivalry between competitors than collaboration. Here, finding peers and receiving feedback can be a welcoming, organic process.
Vermont has the infrastructure, workforce development, and innovation modern businesses need…
Vermont is first in patents filed per capita in the nation. That may come as no surprise to those who know that the state was ranked 8th in the Index of Entrepreneurial Activity by the Kaufman Foundation in 2012 and is currently number one for green job creation. But this great state’s business environment has more to offer than innovation.
Whether by planes, trains, or automobiles, Vermont is easily accessible to Montreal in the north (where the Port of Montreal enables simple shipping) and Boston and New York City in the south.
And with following programs, the Green Mountain State helps to offset training costs, locate skilled laborers, and provide essential educational resources for a dynamic, skilled workforce:
- The Vermont Training Program, a fund that reimburses businesses for as much as 50 percent of trainee wages until they are fully productive
- The Vermont Manufacturing Extension Center
- The Workforce Education and Training Fund
- Vermont’s Apprenticeship Program
- The Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility
- Vermont HITEC
- Vermont Employment Growth Incentive (VEGI)
Vermont hits the ground running with a 2020 economic development strategy
Vermont became one of the first states to complete a comprehensive economic development strategy (CEDS) in 2014 – and now with a 2020 CEDS, the state is prepared to bolster growth.
Woodstock and neighboring towns take things a step further
As part of the East Central Vermont CEDS Region, Woodstock falls within an Economic Development District. This distinction is critical, as it enables local planning and development leaders to support new businesses and foster growth with existing establishments through a variety of grant opportunities. The East Central Vermont CEDS’s mission is “to access and provide resources and to facilitate support for quality decision making for the benefit of entrepreneurs, businesses, and communities” within Addison, Orange, Rutland, and Windsor Counties.
In support of this initiative, the Vermont Small Business Development Center (VtSBDC) of Randolph offers new and seasoned businesses no-cost assistance with:
- Startup planning
- Growth strategies
- Financial management
To access recent VtSBDC success stories, click here.
For businesses interested in securing downtown retail space, Woodstock’s own dedicated Economic Development Commission (EDC) has an enticing offer: a two-month free rent incentive in the village’s central shopping area. More details about this grant-based program will be released shortly.