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Economic development receives a boost with the opening of new center in downtown Rochester

Seven area groups that work with entrepreneurs are joining forces and forming the RAEDI Economic Development Center on the sixth floor of the Minnesota Biobusiness Center. The new center is hosting a grand opening on the evening of Monday, Oct. 3.

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Seven area groups that work with entrepreneurs are joining forces and setting up shop as a “one-stop” business development center - RAEDI Economic Development Center - on the sixth floor of the Minnesota Biobusiness Center at 221 First Ave. SW. The new center, which is moving into space last occupied by Mayo Clinic, is hosting a grand opening on the evening of Monday, Oct. 3, 2022.
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ROCHESTER — Economic development is moving up in Rochester next week.

Seven area groups that work with entrepreneurs are joining forces and setting up shop as a “one-stop” business development center on the sixth floor of the Minnesota Biobusiness Center at 221 First Ave. SW.

“This is a big deal,” said Rochester Area Economic Development, Inc. President John Wade. “This is a great opportunity for everyone to work together to give local business a boost.”

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The space will operate under the name of the RAEDI Economic Development Center . The other groups that will be based on the sixth floor will be the Southeast Minnesota Region Small Business Development Center, Black Entrepreneurship Team, the African Development Hub, the Collider Foundation, Southeast Minnesota Capital Fund and Southeast Minnesota SCORE.

The new center, which is moving into space last occupied by Mayo Clinic, is hosting a grand opening on the evening of Monday, Oct. 3, 2022.

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“The EDC will accelerate economic growth for the Rochester area, streamlining the collaboration between businesses and the diverse nonprofits who serve them,” stated Wade.

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John Wade

He expects to have between 15 to 20 people based in the center along with co-working space for start-ups and other growing businesses.

RAEDI and SCORE were previously based in offices on the street level of the Hotel Indigo building at 220 S Broadway Ave. The SBDC was formerly based on the Rochester Community and Technical College campus. Collider was previously based in the historic Conley Maass Downs building at 14 Fourth St. SW.

“We feel that the EDC will not only allow for better connectivity among Rochester area organizations that support entrepreneurs but will also improve the experience of area entrepreneurs in gaining access to resources that can help them at multiple stages of their business journey,” said Executive Director of Collider Foundation Amanda Leightner .

The Black Entrepreneurship Team believes this move will aid its mission of eliminating the racial wealth gap in Southeast Minnesota by increasing the number of successful Black-owned businesses.

“We are looking forward to this new partnership with EDC to help strengthen and empower the Black business community with additional resources needed for the community,” said BET leader Tawonda Burks.

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Jeff Kiger writes a daily column, "Heard Around Rochester," in addition to writing articles about local businesses, Mayo Clinic, IBM, Hormel Foods, Crenlo and others. The opinions of my employer do not necessarily reflect my opinions. He has worked in Rochester for the Post Bulletin since 1999. Send tips to jkiger@postbulletin.com or via Twitter to @whereskiger . You can call him at 507-285-7798.
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