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​Creative Entrepreneur Accelerator Program 

The Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and the PCA's Pennsylvania Partners in the Arts (PPA) partner organizations are pleased to make available the Creative Entrepreneur Accelerator Program. This program is designed to pair access to existing small business consulting services with financial resources up to $2,000 for creative entrepreneurs who aspire to start their own for-profit business or who operate an existing for-profit micro business.

Download the Creative Entrepreneur Accelerator Program info sheet (PDF)

Creative entrepreneurs are invaluable assets to communities. They lead innovation, deliver creative products and services, generate economic opportunity, and build community identity. Assisting creative entrepreneurs is part of the pathway to recovery and increased opportunity within a rapidly changing economic environment.

Additionally, this program advances and prioritizes the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts' overarching value of diversity, equity, and inclusion and prioritize investment in creative entrepreneurs who identify as Black, Indigenous, or persons of color (BIPOC) or those located in and whose work benefits low-income communities.

Who are creative entrepreneurs?

Under this program's definition, creative entrepreneurs are individuals who intend to form a business or who operate a for-profit micro business in Pennsylvania within one or more of the following creative industry areas:

  • Marketing – Advertising and marketing agencies & professionals.
  • Architecture – Architecture firms & architects.
  • Visual Arts & Crafts – Galleries, artists, artisans & makers.
  • Design – Product, interior, graphic, and fashion design firms and designers.
  • Film & Media – Film, video, animation, TV & Radio businesses.
  • Digital Games – Companies, programmers & individuals producing games.
  • Music & Entertainment –Producers, venues, musicians & performers.
  • Publishing – Print or electronic businesses & content creators, editors & writers.

Additional information:

  • Creative Entrepreneurs must be at least 18 years of age and a current resident of Pennsylvania for at least one year.
  • Creative entrepreneur's business must have gross revenue less than $200,000.
  • Creative entrepreneurs are eligible to receive fund through the Creative Entrepreneurs Accelerator Program once every three years.

How to apply

This program is administered regionally by the PCA's  Pennsylvania Partners in the Arts (PPA) Partners, in cooperation with a network of small business development organizations, including the PA Small Business Development Centers. To learn more about the program in your county and participating referral coordinators, contact your regional PPA partner.

  • Creative entrepreneurs will first receive consultation services from and business plan review by a local small business development organization (known as "referral coordinators" for the purposes of this program). Business consultation services will be provided at no cost to interested creative entrepreneurs.
  • Referral coordinators can help with the how-tos of starting a business, development of a sound business plan, and business growth and sustainability strategies.
  •  Once a referral coordinator has reviewed a creative entrepreneur's business plan, they will refer the creative entrepreneur to the regional PPA partner organization.
  •  Upon receiving the referral, the PPA partner will send application materials to the creative entrepreneur.
  • After receiving an eligible and complete application, the PPA partner will enter into an award agreement with the creative entrepreneur and process a grant up to $2,000.

Interested in learning more?

To start the process of taking advantage of the Creative Business Accelerator Program, contact your regional PPA partner organization (PDF) 

For general questions about the Creative Business Accelerator Program contact the PCA's Amie Bantz, Director of Access to the Creative Sector.