Michitson, Vargas Propose Business ‘Scale-Up’ Challenge

(File photograph.)

Haverhill City Council President John A. Michitson.

Haverhill City Council President John A. Michitson.

Two Haverhill city councilors will present to their colleagues Tuesday night a proposed competition among manufacturing businesses, which offers $50,000 and other benefits to those “seeking to grow, expand or scale their business” in the city.

On the agenda, council President John A. Michitson and first-term City Councilor Andy Vargas will discuss a proposed “Haverhill Fabrication Scale-up Challenge” from the City of Haverhill, “in collaboration with local businesses, non-profits and private partners.” According to documents, the competition is targeted at “companies that are developing a physical product, including innovations for the internet of things” and have moved beyond the “start-up” stages.

Haverhill City Councilor Andy Vargas.

Haverhill City Councilor Andy Vargas.

“This competition is open to all manufacturing-focused scale-ups across a wide range of sectors, from high tech product engineering and assembly to food production,” a statement reads. “Haverhill has a special interest in developing capacity as a Boston-area leader in the fabrication of intelligent connected devices also known as the ‘Internet of Things (IoT).’ Scale-up companies working in the IoT space are especially encouraged to apply. We are also seeking to enhance Haverhill’s existing manufacturing base with IoT to increase competitiveness in the global economy.”

In addition to a $50,000 “prize to be used for any business purpose,” a challenge winner would also receive “built-in assistance from local technology, banking, manufacturing and business specialists who will be available as ‘house doctors,’” as well as 40 hours’ free legal work, publicity and assistance locating “suitable real estate in Haverhill and discounted rent.”

To qualify, a business would be required to have a formal strategy plan “inclusive of a proven revenue model” and be willing to commit to establishing a primary business location in Haverhill at least three years.

Plans call for creating a one-stop Haverhill Business Assistance Center at a repurposed “Haverhill Means Business” website. HaverhillMeansBusiness.com is owned by the Greater Haverhill Chamber of Commerce and the site once provided an inventory of available commercial and industrial space.

The Haverhill City Council meets at 7 p.m., Tuesday, in Theodore A. Pelosi Jr. Council Chambers at Haverhill City Hall.

3 thoughts on “Michitson, Vargas Propose Business ‘Scale-Up’ Challenge

  1. Why wouldn;t the chamber be involved ? It’s a business venture challenge. Don’t blame everything on the chamber. They can’t control politicians and their foibles. They can yell and scream but in the end, what can they really do ? Nothing !

    • But they DON’T yell and scream Jack….that’s my point.
      They don’t confront politicians as their members businesses are being devastated by anti-business public policy.

  2. Where is the $50K coming from? More importantly, where is the benefit to taxpayers? Committing to be in the city for 3 years is essentially meaningless.

    John, I hope you haven’t fallen victim to ACORN Andy’s mindset that government is solution to all problems. The very last thing this city needs is another liberal Democrat tax and spend politician. Isn’t it ironic that the Greater Haverhill Chamber of Commerce is involved with this? Who would know better about available rentable space than the folks there who stood by and did nothing as meals and parking taxes devastated downtown businesses.