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A young Rochester nonprofit that provides education to entrepreneurs recently received $250,000 grant to help fund its mission.

The Collider Foundation, lead by local business leader Traci Downs, was recently awarded a two-year grant from the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation in Kansas City, Missouri. 

The grant is to support the Collider goal "to develop and pilot educational programming for low income entrepreneurs and entrepreneurs located in federally recognized economically distressed communities ...."

The Collider Foundation was also recently awarded money from the U.S. Bank’s Community Possible Grant Program "to pilot a lean startup course in early 2020."

The foundation is a sister operation to the remote working office called Collider Coworking. It was opened by Traci and Hunter Downs in 2016 at 14 Fourth St. SW in the historic brick Conley-Maass building that the Downs renovated.

Rochester Rising, a local news site focused on the entrepreneurial community news site lead by Amanda Leightner, was recently added under the Collider Foundation umbrella "to help facilitate storytelling efforts and to broadcast wins from the local entrepreneurial ecosystem."

The foundation rolled out these announcements just as the Med City prepares for Entrepreneurship Week 2019 events to kick off on Tuesday with a breakfast event at the Rochester Area Chamber Commerce starting at 8 a.m. and ending the day with the Rochester Economic Development Inc'.s annual RAVE Entrepreneurial Night awards at the Rochester Technology Campus, formerly the IBM campus.

Biz buzz

While the start-up crowd gets fired up, an area bank is preparing for a bricks-and-mortar expansion.

A local bank will soon expand its presence in Rochester with by building out a full-service branch.

I'll have more on that project soon.

Jeff Kiger tracks business action in Rochester and southeastern Minnesota every day in Heard on the Street. Send tips to jkiger@postbulletin.com or via Twitter to @whereskiger. You can call him at 285-7798.

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