May – National Pet Month

May 23, 2024 | President’s blog

It seems someone has turned the weather switch and at long last we are into something close to spring.  It’s May, which happens to be National Pet Month.  Our pets – they are

Investment Officer Bianca Kowal’s pup Zoey

furry, cuddly and we love them!  But they also pack a serious economic punch: in 2023 the pet industry contributed $303 billion to the U.S. Economy, an increase of 16% from 2022. With IDEXX as an anchor, Maine has been steadily increasing its reputation as a hub for animal health and technology.  This month, we will feature a few vet tech companies to showcase this important sector, and, as importantly, some of the furry friends that keep our own staffers smiling everyday (when we did a call for pet photos, we

got a rapid and enthusiastic response!).

Furry friends aside, there has been considerable activity at MTI this spring.  We are excited to announce an RFP that seeks to diversify Maine’s entrepreneurial ecosystem both demographically and geographically.  We are seeking creative proposals to help us reach historically underserved populations and create a diverse business community in Maine.  The full RFP can be found here; proposals are due June 21.

Along these same lines, in an effort to reach more rural areas of Maine, MTI is the Presenting Sponsor of Mainebiz’s On the Road series. The networking receptions provide a platform for regional business leaders to connect, exchange ideas, and showcase their communities. The next On the Road series is being held in Belfast at the Belfast  Yacht Club and Event Center on today from 4 – 6P. I will be on hand to represent MTI and share a brief overview of our funding and services, I hope to see some of you there!

Finally, Our MERC program continues to support a wide range of businesses with consulting expertise. In April of 2024, MERC received 18 requests, approved 10 applications, and completed 10 projects. 50% of the projects approved in April were to minority-owned businesses, and 20% were to economically disadvantaged areas of the state.

I hope you have a terrific rest of the month.  Don’t forget to spoil your pets, enjoy May’s flowering trees and plants, and get outside and embrace the warmer weather and longer sunlit days.