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Annual Report 2021


Innovation districts building

With a long history of innovation, Ohio recognizes the importance of continued investment to drive economic prosperity, stimulate funding, and create high-quality jobs. Together with the state of Ohio and our health Care and university partners, JobsOhio has launched one of the nation’s most ambitious and comprehensive economic development initiatives. Our Innovation Strategy creates Innovation Districts, funds grants for new R&D centers, and provides businesses essential growth capital.

Innovation Districts

An innovation district is a close-knit ecosystem with economic, physical, and networking assets that are conducive to creating and commercializing new ideas. JobsOhio invested $300 million to fuel the creation of three world-class Innovation Districts. The goal is to create sustainable networks of ideas, infrastructure, and talent where the world’s top people and companies come to innovate and grow. In 2021, Innovation Districts in Cleveland and Columbus were unveiled. Along with an Innovation District in Cincinnati, these areas establish Ohio as a leader in health care, life sciences, and technology.

This focus on talent growth and retention is further amplified through the state’s Innovation Districts. The three districts create sustainable ecosystems of ideas, infrastructure, and talent while positioning Ohio as a global leader in healthcare, technology, and life science research and development. With a JobsOhio investment of $300 million, the Innovation Districts aim to create, over the next 10 years, 60,000 new jobs, 47,500 additional STEM certifications and degrees, and to generate an estimated $9 billion annual economic impact for the state.

Cincinnati Innovation District

The Cincinnati Innovation District is anchored by The University of Cincinnati and Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, which lead a combined $450 million each year in research. This research results in discoveries that become the basis for innovative startups in the tech and
healthcare sectors.

Cleveland Innovation District

The Cleveland Innovation District is anchored by major players in health care and higher education: Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland State University, MetroHealth, and University Hospitals. The Innovation District will create significant research, development, and job opportunities in northeast Ohio. At the center of this effort, the Cleveland Clinic will launch its new Global Center for Pathogen Research & Human Health to combat emerging infectious disease threats worldwide.

Columbus Innovation District

The Ohio State University and Nationwide Children’s Hospital lead the Columbus Innovation District, which collaborate and invest in economic growth, discoveries, and impactful career opportunities within the state capital. As the geographic center of the state, Columbus has unique opportunities for innovation.

Growth Capital Fund

JobsOhio Growth Capital (JOGC) Fund provides qualifying early-stage and growth-stage companies with financial and other support to help them become Ohio’s next generation of great employers and intellectual property creators. JOGC has a co-investment, risk capital structure, aligning with the strength of the round’s lead investor and founder teams. JOGC can participate in financing rounds via Convertible Debt or Direct Equity on the same terms as the lead and other investors in the round. JOGC investment is capped at 20% of an investment round and 20% aggregate ownership of any individual investment.

Through December 31, 2021


Companies invested in


JOGC total investment


Leverage on JOGC capital

Research & Development Center Grant Program

The JobsOhio Research & Development (R&D) Center Grant Program was created to facilitate new strategic corporate R&D centers in Ohio. Such centers will support the development and commercialization of emerging technologies and products that align with one or more of JobsOhio’s targeted industries. Through December 31, 2021, JobsOhio completed 20 R&D Center grants, totaling over $60 million, with companies that will create over 1,000 new jobs and invest $490 million (8X investment).

Novagard Solutions

Getting a better grip on innovation.

The workforce has undergone many dramatic shifts because of the lingering pandemic. To attract and retain talent, Novagard Solutions knew it was imperative to keep workers trained. The Cleveland company manufactures silicone coatings and adhesives, thermal products, and foams for several markets. With a JobsOhio R&D Center Grant, it expanded its operations and trained employees in a state-of-the-art lab used to reformulate its silicone. As a result, this woman-owned company grew its revenue by $42 million and brought 50 new jobs to northeast Ohio.