KeyBank Business Boost & Build Program: Frequently Asked Questions

We are extremely excited to announce a new partnership with KeyBank Foundation. The “KeyBank Business Boost & Build Program, Powered by JumpStart” initiative is designed to stimulate economic growth and workforce development by fostering small business success in communities throughout Ohio and upstate New York.

Below we have answered some of the questions you’re likely to have regarding the new partnership:

What is the KeyBank Business Boost & Build Program?

The KeyBank Business Boost & Build Program is a KeyBank-funded, JumpStart-powered initiative designed to transform neighborhoods by helping microenterprise, startups, scaleups and community members thrive in Ohio and upstate New York. The program is being funded by a historic $24M grant to JumpStart from the KeyBank Foundation—making it both the largest single grant the foundation has ever awarded and the largest single philanthropic partnership JumpStart has ever formed.

How will the funds KeyBank is providing to JumpStart be used?

Funds will be used to provide support and structure for individuals, entrepreneurs and small business owners while creating thousands of jobs and preparing students for the growing technology, service and manufacturing industries.*

Specifically, the program will deliver the following outcomes:

  • Accelerate the growth of more than 2,500 small businesses and micro-enterprises – the majority of which will be women or minority-owned businesses
  • Accelerate the growth of more than 2,000 tech startup and scaleup companies
  • Create a minimum of 5,350 jobs
  • Provide support for participation in the tech economy by meeting business needs or enabling workforce training for 1,000 individuals
  • Connect 800 individuals to open job opportunities and prepare more than 1,000 students to enter the workforce after graduating high school

Together, KeyBank and JumpStart will accomplish their aims by:

  • Establishing the KeyBank Center for Technology, Innovation and Inclusive Growth to serve individuals across Ohio
  • Providing small business technical assistance in Cleveland, OH and Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse and Albany NY
  • Offering technical assistance and grant/equity capital for technology startups and scaleups
  • Facilitating vocational education and workforce training for students and recent high school graduates in Cleveland, and building connections to companies needing their talents.

*These funds are specifically for providing technical support and services and will not go towards investing capital into companies.

How will the funds be split between regions?

Aside from the distinction between program elements planned specifically for Ohio and New York, specific financial commitments have not yet been made.

What is the timing of this program and official roll out date?

Following a July 31, 2017 public announcement of the partnership, KeyBank and JumpStart will work together to develop and schedule local program launches. New programs, such as the KeyBank Center for Technology, Innovation and Inclusive Growth, will be ramping up starting in August 2017, with an immediate focus on identifying the right organizations to partner with on this important work. For work and programs already underway, JumpStart will continue working with its existing partners to execute those programs.

What kinds of new partnerships will JumpStart be building in communities inside and outside Northeast Ohio?

While partnership opportunities will vary in each area of the program, JumpStart will seek to partner with organizations currently engaged and adding value to the intended audiences we seek to reach. Through its current work, JumpStart has established relationships in place with many strong partners today but we will also be working with KeyBank’s regional Corporate Responsibility Officers and others from the community to identify and form relationships with key partners and stakeholder groups.

How do I become a partner in this work?

To learn more about partnering with JumpStart in the KeyBank Business Boost & Build Program, please contact JumpStart President Cathy Belk at [email protected].

I am an entrepreneur/jobseeker. What does this news mean for me?

This transformative partnership will allow us and our partners to provide services for many more small businesses, startup firms, and scaling companies in Ohio and upstate New York. But our processes won’t change.  To learn more about how JumpStart can help you, visit the website and fill out our application form ( to engage with someone specifically and learn how we or a partner of ours can support your business and ambitions.