Commerce introduces new program to help second-stage businesses grow

“Thrive!” program offers expertise to help high-growth businesses with up to $25 million in annual revenues expand

OLYMPIA, WA – Expanding on the success of its original economic gardening program, the Washington Department of Commerce has developed Thrive!, a new program to help second-stage companies increase revenues and position for growth.

Based on the Edward Lowe Foundation’s System for Integrated Growth (SiG) framework, Thrive! connects chief executive officers to subject matter experts who provide them with data, analytics, best practices and strategies that are typically only available to larger corporations. This actionable information can be used to overcome roadblocks related to human resources, finances, operations, marketing, sales, international trade and other business issues.

“Since its introduction three years ago, Commerce’s second-stage program has helped 39 businesses across the state find innovative ways to increase growth and revenue,” said Lisa Brown, Commerce director. “Where the original program focused solely on external issues, Thrive! examines internal and external roadblocks to growth, since one can often affect the other.”

Research shows that historically, companies that have completed a second-stage program like Thrive! experience a 15% to 30% increase in revenue.

The ideal candidate for Thrive! is a company that’s been in operation in Washington for at least two years, has between six and 99 employees, achieved $1 to $25 million in annual revenue and has demonstrated an appetite and aptitude to handle additional growth.

To help offset the $4,275 cost of the program, Commerce contributes $1,275 to pay for the initial needs assessment call with the team leader as well as a strengths-weaknesses-opportunities-threats (SWOT) analysis call with a team of experts assigned to address identified business issues. Based on these calls and the resulting work plan, the CEO can move into the research phase of Thrive!, which entails up to 33 hours of professional research time. Thrive! is conducted entirely by phone and a secure online portal created especially for each participating company. Thrive! requires approximately eight to 12 hours of the CEO’s time over the course of four to eight weeks.

More information about Thrive! as well as a link to the application for the program is available at


Contact: Penny Thomas, Commerce Communications, (206) 256-6106

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