Ardmore offers incentives to attract out-of-state companies that have research funds

Innovations and Entrepreneurs columnist Rex Smitherman writes that the Ardmore Development Authority offers an aggressive incentive program that dovetails perfectly with Oklahoma's strategy to increase the state's share of Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II awards.
BY REX SMITHERMAN Published: October 2, 2012
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The Ardmore Development Authority also is adding critical manufacturing equipment (donated or purchased used) to its soon-to-be completed business incubator in Ardmore Technology Park.

“We have young companies here that need some equipment that they couldn't possibly afford,” Stucky said.

“So, instead of investing in CDs and earning a half-percent interest, we decided to buy a Riber MBE system, a chemical vapor deposition system and an X-ray diffraction system, and charge a fee for use.”

Stucky says you have to push the envelope.

“You can't do things the way they've always been done. The equipment, the synergy with other companies, and the incentive bonus are attracting technology firms. We think this is going to work,” he said.

The Ardmore Development Authority has developed an exciting strategy to grow its economy. It is an excellent model for locally supported economic development.

Rex Smitherman is interim president and CEO of i2E Inc., a nonprofit corporation that mentors many of the state's technology-based startup companies. i2E receives state appropriations from the Oklahoma Center for the Advancement of Science and Technology. Contact Smitherman at i2E_Comments@i2E.org.