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    Home : About the KnowledgeWay : Press Releases : 10/23/96 
Virginia's CIT Joins Effort to Support Potomac KnowledgeWay Netpreneur Program
 
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October 23, 1996

The Potomac KnowledgeWay Project announced that Virginia's Center for Innovative Technology (CIT) has joined Charter Sponsors MCI Communications Corporation and the Morino Institute to become the Lead Program Sponsor of the Potomac KnowledgeWay Netpreneur Program.

The Netpreneur Program is committed to providing services that encourage the growth of net-centric businesses – those businesses evolving on or primarily dependent upon the Internet. The centerpiece of the Program's services will be a new Web site, to be developed, designed and hosted by MCI and the Morino Institute. The Potomac KnowledgeWay plans to roll out the Netpreneur Program in the first quarter of 1997.

CIT will lead the Commonwealth's partnership with the Netpreneur Program. With CIT's assistance, the Netpreneur Program will develop links with the state's entrepreneurship programs, technology councils, small business development centers, economic development authorities, chambers of commerce, and related trade and business associations and agencies. These organizations will form a coalition that will work with and serve as an advisory group, outreach agent, and partner to the Netpreneur Program to help identify, engage and assist the netpreneur to create and advance net-centric businesses. By helping to create this coalition of Virginia economic development and business assistance organizations, CIT will play a vital role in cultivating netpreneurs. "We have supported the Potomac KnowledgeWay Project from the beginning and we are stepping forward with an additional investment in the Netpreneur Program because we believe this new economic driver – the netpreneur – will be essential to the growth and competitiveness of Virginia," said Dr. Robert G. Templin, Jr., president of CIT.

"CIT was one of the KnowledgeWay's first investors. Their additional support of the Netpreneur Program further illustrates the importance of this initiative to Virginia and the greater Washington region," said April Young, executive director of the Potomac KnowledgeWay Project. "Traditional business models do not apply to these Internet pioneers, and the KnowledgeWay is committed to creating a bank of resources, relevant information and on- and off-line programs to help cultivate this untapped market."

CIT exists to stimulate economic growth within Virginia by serving Virginia's technology businesses. Created by the Virginia General Assembly in 1984, CIT enhances the Commonwealth's competitiveness by providing businesses with access to the state's technology resources, and assists in the creation and retention of high technology jobs and businesses. In FY95 and FY96, CIT has helped create 5,571 jobs and 130 companies and has contributed over $161.7 million in increased competitiveness to Virginia.

The Potomac KnowledgeWay Project is a nonprofit organization created to help the greater Washington region seize the economic, educational and social opportunities of the communications revolution and become the global center of the knowledge industry. The organization is focused on three primary initiatives: helping entrepreneurs bring net-centric products and services to market faster; promoting a world-class work force; and advancing connectivity and connectedness throughout the greater Washington region.

MCI and the Potomac KnowledgeWay Project will spend the next few months finalizing the details of the net entrepreneurs program, and they plan to roll it out by the end of 1996. The program will be designed to turn the region's net-centric entrepreneurial movement into an economic force in the global economy and to serve as a model that can be duplicated in other emerging high-tech centers.

MCI, headquartered in Washington, D.C., is one of the world's largest and fastest growing diversified communications companies. With annual revenue of more than $15 billion, MCI offers consumers and businesses a broad portfolio of services including long distance, wireless, local, paging, Internet software and access, information services, outsourcing, business software, advanced global telecommunications services and music distribution and merchandising.

The Potomac KnowledgeWay Project has quickly emerged as a powerful and positive force in Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia. In addition to net entrepreneurship, the organization is focused on three other primary initiatives: increasing awareness of what the communications revolution means to individuals, businesses and institutions in the greater Washington region; promoting a net-savvy workforce; and advancing a regional information infrastructure that will improve connectedness throughout the region.

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