The Solid Waste Division of King County, Washington, has launched a program designed to help businesses develop projects focused on expanding waste prevention, repair, reuse, recycling and composting. NextCycle Washington is a free, six-month program offering a combination of business and technical support from Resources Recycling Systems (RRS), Ann Arbor, Michigan; Seattle-based Cascadia Consulting Group; and Portland, Oregon-based Start Consulting Group.
According to the RRS website, “NextCycle is a customizable, statewide, accelerator-style program led by state and/or local governments and powered by RRS and local partners to nurture ideas and facilitate connections that develop a pipeline of investable projects for public and private sector partners seeking to advance local and regional circularity.”
RRS says it “designs, implements and facilitates the program based on the goals of the host location.”
According to a news release issued by King County, the program offers mentorship from community leaders and industry subject matter experts and access to its professional network. It also assists with funding and partnership opportunities. Participants in NextCycle Washington can be entrepreneurs or startups, small businesses, established corporations, nonprofits or collaborations of entities.
“King County is dedicated to supporting businesses with promising circular economy projects that help expand waste prevention and recycling,” says Emily Coleman, circular organics program manager at King County. “Through NextCycle Washington, businesses will get the essential resources they need to ready their projects for investment and implementation.”
Applicants selected for the program will receive a number of benefits:
- a multiday business boot camp to develop growth plan fundamentals and one-on-one consulting with experienced mentors and subject matter experts to improve and refine business models and project plans;
- facilitated networking opportunities to foster collaborations and partnerships;
- community engagement to ensure equitable outcomes and generate grassroots support;
- identification of funding pathways and connections to potential investors; and
- support to develop and refine presentations to help secure project funding.
Applications will be accepted through July 15.
NextCycle Washington was developed in partnership with representatives of local and state government, businesses and community groups focused on reducing waste and expanding reuse and recycling.
Funding for NextCycle Washington is provided through King County’s Solid Waste Division, Washington Department of Ecology, Washington Department of Commerce and Seattle Public Utilities. Technical support and program management is provided by Resources Recycling Systems, Cascadia, Start Consulting and Traversal Designs.