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TN Placemakers Entrepreneurship Fund

What is it?

TN Placemakers Fund is a pool of monetary resources dedicated to assisting communities across the state develop and train entrepreneurs by allowing them to secure funds for three broad and diverse categories of entrepreneurial activities.

Why does it matter?

Resolves confusion and fragmentation relative to TNECD’s entrepreneurship and small business development initiatives by consolidating resources into a single fund.

This increases the overall customer experience by streamlining and simplifying the application process. It reduces time spent on applications to multiple programs over multiple time periods.

Application Deadline

Initially: October 1-December 31, 2018, Rolling Contracts up to 24-month
Months 1-18:  Implementation and utilization
Months 19-24: Observation period, data reporting, and close-out of the grant

Application Amounts

Total available: $1,000,000
Max /Grant: $100,000
Funds may be allocated to one, some, or among all three categories of entrepreneurial activity.
A 10% match required by grantees

Information Sessions


 Winchester Livery, 122 N Jefferson St.

Thursday, September 6, 2018

3:00 PM


The Mill, 217 S Mill Ave. 

Thursday, September 6, 2018

2:30 PM


Krider Performing Arts Center, 650 Volunteer Dr.

Thursday, September 6, 2018

10:00 AM


Municpal Building, 25 Public Square

Thursday, September 6, 2018

10:00 AM

To RVSP, email

Assess and Develop

Assessing the small business and entrepreneurship landscape by assisting communities with information gathering and dissemination.

Eligible activities: Determine gaps in the community and ways to close them which may include, but are not limited to, retail development, tourism, agribusiness, coworking spaces, commercial kitchen incubators, entrepreneurship training services, etc.

Maximum funding allocation: $15,000/grantee

Build and Sustain

Increase the success of local small business and entrepreneurs through stabilization and expansion funds to grantees (and subrecipients), directly engaged in small business and entrepreneurial development.

Eligible activities: Furniture, fixtures, and equipment; offset of operational cost to reach sustainability (i.e. rent utilities, installation of technology like gig service into a building without it, etc.), applied primarily to physical locations, such as commercial kitchens, pop-up shops, coworking spaces, etc.

Maximum funding allocation: $75,000/grantee

Education, Resources and Tools

Provide access to education, resources, and tools directly to future and existing small businesses and entrepreneurs.

Eligible activities: Small business and entrepreneurial development activities, including, but limited to, mentor-protégé program, coding classes, popup shops, craft and artisan development (i.e. Etsy), pitch competitions, Co-Starters classes, Economic Gardening.

Maximum funding allocation: $25,000/grantee

Application Period:
Initially: October 1-December 31, 2018, Rolling

Contract length:
Up to 24-months
Months 1-18:  Implementation and utilization
Months 19-24: Observation period, data reporting, and close-out of the grant.

Total Funds Available FY2019:  $1,000,000
Max/Grant: $100,000
*10% match required

Assess and Develop:  Maximum funding allocation: $15,000
Build and Sustain:  Maximum funding allocation: $75,000
Program: Education, Resources, & Tools:  Maximum funding allocation: $25,000

Eligible Applicants:
City or County government
Chamber of Commerce
Economic Development Organization

How to apply:
Apply on website
Other important dates:
Application webinar – November 15, 10:00 CDT