New EDA Tech Hub spans Animal Health Corridor

A big boost from the federal government is heading to the heartland. The U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) announced the designation of 31 Tech Hubs across the country today. Lawrence is part of the Kansas City Inclusive Biologics and Biomanufacturing Tech Hub, which spans the KC Animal Health Corridor. Designated Tech Hubs can apply to receive between $40 and $70 million for each implementation funding.

This is the first phase of the new Tech Hubs program, an innovative economic development endeavor strategically crafted to catalyze regional innovation and bolster job growth. This initiative is designed to enhance a region’s ability to produce, market and implement cutting-edge technology, ultimately propelling American competitiveness to new heights. By channeling direct investments into promising U.S. regions, the program aspires to revolutionize them into dynamic, globally competitive hubs of innovation.

BioNexusKC is the lead agency for the hub. Here are the details of the KC BioHub from the EDA:

The KC BioHub’s goal is to position eastern Kansas and western Missouri as a global leader in biologics and biomanufacturing, increasing domestic production of life-saving vaccines and other preventative technologies. With the largest concentration of animal health and nutrition companies in the world, this Tech Hub will leverage the region’s biotechnology assets and existing vaccine manufacturing facilities, research institutions and startup ecosystem to strengthen innovation in animal and human vaccine development and manufacturing. The Tech Hub aims to increase overall domestic vaccine production and enable the United States to capture a greater market share of human vaccine development.

“These outstanding Tech Hubs Designees exemplify place-based economic development strategies at their best: combining federal resources with regional assets, expertise, and coalitions to implement transformational opportunities, said Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development Alejandra Y. Castillo. “As each region develops its own strategy to catalyze innovation and job creation, the entire nation grows more secure and more competitive.”

Tech Hubs was authorized by the bipartisan CHIPS and Science Act, which President Joe Biden signed into law in August 2022. “Phase 1 winners were selected from nearly 400 applications from regional consortia that include industry, academia, state and local governments, economic development organizations and labor and workforce partners,” noted the EDA’s press release. “As part of the Tech Hubs competition, each consortium outlined plans for strengthening its region’s capacity to manufacture, commercialize, and deploy critical technologies.”

Read the full press release from the EDA here.