Prospect company receives small business grant

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An information technology company in Prospect is among the five latest small businesses to qualify for the state’s Small Business Express Program.

Lightning PC Inc. of Prospect received a $100,000 matching grant as part of the program, Gov. Dannel Malloy announced last week.

Lightning PC, a full-service IT firm, will receive the $100,000 grant to match a $103,000 investment of its own to expand its Waterbury Road facility. The money will also be used to increase the company’s marketing efforts.

Lightning PC provides network and integration services, web design, and computer support and repair. The company said it will add two positions as a result of the grant.

The other small businesses that received grants were: Vellrath Engineering, LLC of Plymouth, which is known for developing spray-applied, fire-resistant materials, has developed an affordable, easy-to-mix fire-resistant material for the consumer market; Precision Dip Coating of Waterbury, which creates molded plastic parts and provides rubberized coatings that protect and insulate a wide array of pre-manufactured metal components; Outbound Inc., a Milford-based manufacturer of material handling equipment, and West Hartford Deli Inc., which is converting its business into a full-service, mid-priced bar and restaurant.

The Small Business Express Program was passed by the legislature during last fall’s special session on jobs to encourage small business expansion and job growth. In total, it will provide $100 million to help the state’s small businesses hire more employees and fund capital investments.

The program, which is administered by the state Department of Economic and Community Development, offers loans and matching grants to Connecticut companies with fewer than 50 employees at the time of application.

“We are making important changes to how we do business, both within state government and how government partners with Connecticut companies,” said Malloy in a news release. “The Connecticut economy is growing faster than that of 41 other states — and EXP an important tool to help continue this momentum. When small businesses expand, hire workers, and add their expertise to our statewide portfolio, the entire state benefits.”

For more information on or to apply for the program, visit the Small Business Express Program website at www.ct.gov/ecd and click on the link, or contact Michelle Lugo of the state Department of Economic and Community Development at (860) 270-8052 or Michelle.Lugo@ct.gov.