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Governor Bullock Announces Grants to Support Bozeman, Helena Business Development Projects and 23 New Montana Jobs

Tuesday, May 12, 2015/Categories: Governor's Office/Tags: Grants

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                         May 12, 2015


Mike Wessler, Deputy Communications Director, Governor’s Office, 444-9725

Ronja Abel, Communications Director, Department of Commerce, 437-2359

Governor Bullock Announces Grants to Support Bozeman, Helena Business Development Projects and 23 New Montana Jobs

HELENA – Governor Steve Bullock and Montana Department of Commerce Director Meg O’Leary announced the award of $210,000 in grants to support 23 new jobs and supplement business investments in Bozeman and Helena. The funds are being made available through the Big Sky Economic Development Trust Fund (BSTF) and Primary Sector Workforce Training Grant (WTG) Programs.

The grants will benefit Montana Instruments, Simms Fishing Products and Elixiter in Bozeman. The City of Helena and the Helena Business Improvement District also received a grant.

“This month, three of Bozeman’s strong manufacturing and technology companies and a leading force in Helena’s business community will receive funding to increase economic prosperity in their communities,” Bullock said. “I am committed to ensuring that Montana stays ahead of the curve when it comes to innovative business development and job creation efforts.”

“The Department of Commerce facilitates public-private collaborations that are proven to strengthen Montana’s economy through business growth and expansion,” said O’Leary.

Larry Johnson, president of the Montana Photonics Industry Alliance, said businesses like Montana Instruments are central to a healthy economy.

“Their endeavors to grow their employment to expand not just their company but also the critical mass of the industry cluster is very important to all of our collective efforts to grow and diversify our local and state economy,” said Johnson.

The recipients of the grants include:

The City of Bozeman received $127,500 of BSTF funds to assist Montana Instruments in Bozeman. Montana lnstruments specializes in precise and innovative optical measurement solutions for research and industry. The grant funds will be used for equipment purchases, and the resulting business expansion activities will support the creation of 17 new Montana jobs.

Prospera Business Network received $26,250 of BSTF funds to assist Simms Fishing Products in Bozeman. Simms Fishing manufactures fishing gear including waders, wading boots, jackets and sun protection clothes for fishing. The grant funds will be used to complete a Preliminary Architectural and Engineering Report to expand Simms’ corporate headquarters and manufacturing facility in Bozeman.

Elixiter, Inc. in Bozeman received $30,000 to train six net new jobs. Elixter is an agency that specializes in marketing strategy technology and planning services delivered on-site or remotely. Through the training, employees in the new jobs will earn the Marketo Expert certification, a credential to reinforce best practices.

Montana Business Assistance Connection (MBAC) received $26,250 to assist the City of Helena and the Helena Business Improvement District (HBID) with the development of a comprehensive master plan for downtown Helena.

More funding opportunities are still available. The deadline for submitting an application for consideration at the next Business Resources Division Grant and Loan Review Committee is June 24, 2015.

For more information, contact Nancy Faroni, Business Resources Division, at (406) 841-2744, or visit the websites at or



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