Doing Business In West Virginia



Corporate Headquarters Credit: Companies that relocate their corporate headquarters are eligible for tax credits. If 15 new jobs are created, the credit is 10 percent of the adjusted qualified investment. The credit increases to 50 percent if 50 or more jobs are created.

Economic Opportunity Credit: Offsets 80 percent of taxes for up to 13 years. Minimum job requirement: 20.

“Five-for-Ten” Program: Provides a tax incentive to businesses that make qualified capital improvements of at least $50 million to an existing base of $100 million or more. It assesses the new capital addition at a salvage value of 5 percent for the first 10 years.

High Growth Business Investment Tax Credit: Equal to 50 percent of the qualified investment made in companies that have been certified by the tax commissioner as eligible for the Strategic R&D Tax Credit.

Manufacturing Investment Credit: Allows a 50 percent corporate net income tax and franchise tax credit, deferral based on investment with no new job creation required.

Manufacturing Sales Tax Exemption: Materials and equipment purchased for direct use in manufacturing are exempt from the 6 percent state sales and use tax.

Tourism Development Incentive: An eligible company that invests in and operates a new or expanding tourism destination project may receive a return of up to 25 percent of approved development costs over 10 years through a consumer sales tax credit.

Strategic R&D Credit: Allows for up to 100 percent tax offset for R&D projects. R&D expenses are exempt from sales tax.

Sunny Day Fund: The Governor’s Contingency Fund now contains funds specially earmarked for economic development projects.

Warehouse “Freeport” Tax Exemption: Goods in transit to an out-of-state destination are exempt from ad valorem property taxes when warehoused in West Virginia.

West Virginia Capital Company Credit: Investors in qualified West Virginia capital companies are entitled to a state tax credit equal to 50 percent of their investment. Capital companies must have a capital base of at least $1 million but not greater than $4 million. The state has authorized $6 million in credits.  



West Virginia Capital Company Act
The West Virginia Economic Development Authority administers a program that provides for debt and equity venture capital investment to small business. A number of firms are qualified in West Virginia to make venture capital investments:

Adena Ventures is a newly capitalized $34 million venture capital enterprise, formed to provide equity and operational assistance to qualifying businesses in central Appalachia. The company's mission is to generate market-rate returns for investors while promoting shared and sustainable economic development throughout its target region.

Adena invests between $200,000 and $2 million in companies with strong management teams, high growth potential and defensible market positions. The U.S. Small Business Administration designated Adena Ventures the first New Markets Venture Capital company in the country and is providing the fund with significant financial leverage, which more than doubles the money available for investment in central Appalachia.

Adena Ventures
C. Andrew Zulauf
2300 MacCorkle Ave., SE
Charleston, West Virginia 25304
(304) 340-3736

Anthem Capital
Ed Spiva
16 S. Calvert St., Suite 800
Baltimore, Maryland 21202-1305
(410) 625-1410


iNetworks, LLC, makes private equity and venture capital investments both directly and through its managed funds, with the history and flexibility of working with life sciences and technology companies as well as traditional industries. We are especially interested in companies, either headquartered in or with substantial operations in West Virginia, that are poised for growth and willing to work closely with our team to achieve sustainable success. Initial investments sourced from iNetworks typically range from $250,000 to $4 million, except that the iNetworks Community Development Capital Company, our community development venture capital fund, is limited to a total investment in one company of $1 million.

iNetworks Advisors, Inc.
Charles A. Schliebs
The Times Building, third floor
336 Fourth Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15222
(412) 281-4277


Innova Commercialization Group, an initiative of the West Virginia High Technology Consortium Foundation, is a statewide commercialization group focused exclusively on West Virginia innovators. Innova utilizes their knowledge of the Mountain State and access to statewide resources to help make entrepreneurs a success.

Innova Commercialization Group

Roger L. Duckworth
VP, technology management (304) 366-2577, ext. 256
Jonathan Elder, CPA
Chief Financial Officer
(304) 366-2577 ext. 224
Greg W. Clutter
Commercialization Manager
(304) 366-2577 ext. 265
  1000 Technology Drive
Suite 1000
Fairmont, West Virginia 26554
Fax: (304) 366-2699







Mountaineer Capital LP provides venture capital to promising new and existing businesses in West Virginia and surrounding states. Mountaineer Capital is licensed as a Small Business Investment Company (SBIC) by the U.S. Small Business Administration. Initial investments are expected to range between $250,000 to $1 million.

Mountaineer Capital LP
Patrick A. Bond
J. Rudy Henley
107 Capitol St.
Suite 300
Charleston, West Virginia 25301
(304) 347-7525
Fax: (304) 347-0072


The Natural Capital Investment Fund (NCIF) is a nonprofit certified Community Development Financial Institution that provides financing for natural resource-based businesses that will advance sustainable economic development throughout West Virginia.

Natural Capital Investment Fund (NCIF)
Marten R. Jenkins Jr.
P.O. Box 1889
Shepherdstown, WV 25443
(304) 876-2815


PA Early Stage
Scott D. Nissenbaum
Building 500, Suite 510
435 Devon Park Drive
Wayne, Pennsylvania 19087
(610) 254-4241

The Progress Fund is a community development financial institution whose mission is to create economic opportunity by lending needed capital and providing technical assistance to small businesses in southwestern and central Pennsylvania and West Virginia. With the decline in industrial businesses, one of the few growing sectors in the rural economy is the tourism industry. The Progress Fund provides opportunities for new and existing entrepreneurs, creates jobs with above average wages and grows the regional economy through its support of the tourism industry and other sectors. The Progress Fund, founded in 1997, is an outgrowth of Congressman John Murtha’s efforts. We have loaned more than $7 million to more than 116 enterprises, creating or preserving more than 750 jobs

The Progress Fund
(724) 529-0384


SELECT CAPITAL VENTURES, I L.P., is a private equity investment firm focused on the healthcare industry. Areas of interest include healthcare services, healthcare information technology, and medical devices and equipment. Select Capital Ventures operates as a Small Business Investment Company (SBIC) licensed by the Small Business Administrations (SBA).

Debra Hellyer
4718 Old Gettysburg Road
Suite 405
Mechanicsburg, PA 17055
(717) 972-1314


Toucan Capital
Bob Hemphill
7600 Wisconsin Ave., 7th floor
Bethesda, Maryland 20814
(240) 497-4060

Walker Ventures, based in Glenwood, Maryland, with approximately $100 million under management, focuses on startup and early stage companies in the high-tech industry to capitalize on the wide range of experience its management and staff has in that area. The firm's West Virginia operation based in Shepherdstown focuses on the entire state. Prior investments included Ultraprise Corp. and, Inc., two companies in West Virginia's Eastern Panhandle.

Walker Ventures
Eric Lewis
(304) 876-1570

West Virginia Economic Development Authority
David Warner
Executive director
NorthGate Business Park
160 Association Drive
Charleston, West Virginia 25311-1217
Telephone: (304) 558-3650; fax: (304) 558-0206

West Virginia Jobs Investment Trust (JIT) is a public venture capital fund created to develop, promote and expand West Virginia's economy by making investment funds available to eligible businesses, thus stimulating economic growth and providing or retaining jobs within the state.

JIT invests in early stage, later stage and mature small companies who wish to expand. Opportunities to create a significant number of jobs while maintaining economic balance are favorably viewed. Economic diversification is a plus. To maintain its ability to assist others in the future, JIT makes investments expected to yield a financial return proportionate to the level of risk it assumes. JIT does not make grants or low-interest loans.

West Virginia Jobs Investment Trust Board
Fifth Floor, 1012 Kanawha Boulevard, East
Charleston, West Virginia 25301
(304) 345-6200; Fax: (304) 345-6262

New and expanding businesses can learn about any of the innovative financial incentive programs listed here by contacting the West Virginia Development Office.

For a preliminary discussion regarding any potential project, contact the West Virginia Development Office as early as practical in the planning cycle. An industrial development representative will be assigned to review each project in detail. West Virginia Development Office representatives will gladly arrange visits to the state to locate the best site for your business activity.

For a detailed prospectus, outline your requirements using a pro forma business presentation similar to proposals made to other financial institutions. Financial and technical experts at the West Virginia Economic Development Authority, which is the state's financing agency, will initiate a review to help structure the best strategy for your project.


Direct loan programs

The West Virginia Economic Development Authority can provide up to 45 percent in financing fixed assets by providing low-interest, direct loans to expanding state businesses and firms locating in West Virginia. Loan term is generally 15 years for real estate intensive projects and five to 10 years for equipment projects. Loan proceeds may be used for the acquisition of land, buildings and equipment. Working capital loans and the refinancing of existing debt are not eligible.

Indirect loan programs

The West Virginia Economic Development Authority provides a loan insurance program through participating commercial banks to assist firms that cannot obtain conventional bank financing. This program insures up to 80 percent of a bank loan for a maximum loan term of four years. Loan proceeds may be used for any business purpose except the refinancing of existing debt.

Industrial revenue bonds

This program provides for customized financing through federal tax-exempt industrial revenue bonds. Of the state's bond allocation, $47,250,000 is reserved for small manufacturing projects; $13,500,000 for qualifying projects in Enterprise Communities, and $74,250,000 for exempt facility projects.

Leveraged technology loan insurance program

This program expands the loan insurance coverage to 90 percent for those businesses involved in the development, commercialization or use of technology-based products and processes. All other terms and conditions are identical to the loan insurance program.

West Virginia Infrastructure and Jobs Development Council

The Economic Infrastructure Bond Fund can be used for financial assistance to public utilities, county development authorities and private companies for infrastructure improvements to support economic development projects. Please contact the West Virginia Development Office Community Development Division for applications. (800) 982-3386 or 558-2234.

West Virginia Small Business Development Center loans

Small business development loans

This program provides capital to entrepreneurs for new or expanded small business with loans from $500 to $15,000. Please contact the West Virginia Small Business Development Center at (888) 982-7232 or 558-2960. (For Calhoun or Wirt County, contact Diane Ludwig at the Little Kanawha Area Development Corporation. Phone (304) 275-4231 or (304) 354-7797.)

Linked deposit program

Provides low-interest loans to qualified small businesses for amounts up to $150,000 and for terms up to four years. Please contact the West Virginia Small Business Development Center at (888) 982-7232 or 558-2960.

Tax Increment Financing

West Virginia voters approved Amendment One in November 2002; this amendment allows increases in property tax associated with qualified economic development and public improvement projects to assist with their long-term financing.  Click here to view a PowerPoint presentation explaining Tax Increment Financing in West Virginia.



The Governor's Workforce Investment Division - a newly formed division within the West Virginia Development Office - matches the skills of West Virginia's willing, available work force with existing jobs and the jobs of the future. The division offers financial and technical services to an employer or a group of employers.

The division coordinates all available state and federal training resources, designing the best possible solution to meet specific employer needs. Training can make new employees job-ready or upgrade the skills of existing workers.

The division will provide a detailed analysis of labor availability in any specific region of the state. WORK4WVA centers offer free recruitment, assessment, evaluation and candidate screening based on employer-based criteria.

Customized training programs can be delivered by a college, university, community college, technical education center or by trainers selected by the company.

The Governor's Workforce Investment Division administers five work force training programs.

Governor's Guaranteed Work Force Program: The program offers training grants up to $1,000 per employee for eligible companies that create a minimum of 10 new jobs within a 12-month period. It provides the following services:

·         Employee recruitment

·         Pre-employment assessment

·         High performance workplace development

·         Structured on-the-job training and development

·         Workplace education

Competitive Improvement Program: The program targets small (50 or fewer employees) and medium (under 500 employees) sized manufacturers. Grants, capped at $1,000 per trainee, require a 50 percent cash contribution by each employer and require employers to document an in-kind contribution (usually wages paid to employees while being trained) toward the project.

Workforce Development Initiative Program: The program encourages working partnerships between educational institutions and the business community. To qualify, community and technical colleges must establish their own revolving fund dedicated to work force development initiatives. The program requires a one-to-one match from the private sector.

Small Business Work Force Program: The program, part of the West Virginia Small Business Development Center system, reimburses the costs of pre-approved technology and technology training for eligible small businesses. The program can provide up to $5,000 in grants designed to enhance competitiveness and expand markets, and up to $10,000 in grants for technology businesses. To be eligible, companies must be for-profit, have 50 or fewer employees, have been in operation for at least one year, have less the $2.5 million in revenues ($3.5 million for technology businesses) and be in good standing with state taxing authorities.

Workforce Investment Act Program: People seeking WIA funding for training - even though they may meet the program entrance requirements - are not considered for training until they complete certain requirements, which may include job search, assessment, development of individual employment plans and other criteria.

Governor's Workforce Investment Division

Ron Radcliff
1900 Kanawha Blvd. E.
Charleston, West Virginia 25305-0311
(304) 558-7024 or (800) 982-3386
Fax: (304) 558-7029



 The development and upkeep of community facilities are directly related to the quality of life for the citizens of West Virginia. Examples of community facilities that are eligible for technical assistance and possible funding include, but are not limited to; storm drains, roads, sidewalks, water/sewer service, city halls, courthouses, police stations, fire stations, senior citizen centers, libraries, community centers, parks, and health clinics. Here are a few of the programs available: 

Appalachian Regional Commission

Type of assistance: Federal grants

Purpose: The Appalachian Regional Commission provides federal grant funds for the support of economic and community development in West Virginia and 12 other states in the Appalachian Region. The goal of ARC is to create opportunities for self-sustaining economic development and improved quality of life.

Description: Projects approved for ARC assistance must support one of the five goal areas:

·         Developing a knowledgeable and skilled population.

·         Strengthening the region's physical infrastructure.

·         Building local and regional capacity.

·         Creating a dynamic economic base.

·         Fostering healthy people.

Eligible activities: Activities generally eligible for funding include, but are not limited to, projects that:

·         Improve educational opportunities and workforce skills.

·         Improve infrastructure for community and economic development.

·         Increase civic and leadership capacity.

·         Increase entrepreneurial opportunities.

·         Improve health care resources.

Eligible applicants: Public entities (cities, towns, counties, regions, public service districts) and nonprofit organizations.

How to apply: Applications are received on an annual basis.

Contact: For additional information about the ARC program, please call the West Virginia Development Office at (800) 982-3386 or (304) 558-2001.

Economic Infrastructure Bond Fund

Type of Assistance: Loans

Purpose: The West Virginia Economic Infrastructure Bond Fund is a financial assistance program that provides funding for projects likely to foster and enhance economic growth and development. It emphasizes business and/or industrial parks. Funding priority goes to projects resulting in immediate job creation; projects providing the opportunity for economic growth and job creation (i.e., shell buildings, business and industrial parks); and projects likely to foster and enhance economic growth and development.

Description: The Economic Infrastructure Bond Fund is a loan program to encourage economic development throughout the state. Funding per project is limited to a maximum of $3 million.

Eligible activities:

·         Acquisition of land and buildings

·         Construction of new facilities

·         Construction or installation of utilities

·         Purchase of machinery or equipment

·         Improvements to or expansion of existing buildings and sites

Eligible applicants:

·         Government agencies

·         Corporations

·         Associations

·         Public corporations

·         Partnerships

·         Political subdivisions

·         Limited liability companies

How to apply: Applications may be obtained by writing:

West Virginia Infrastructure and Jobs Development Council
300 Summers St.
Suite 980
Charleston, West Virginia 25301
(304) 558-4607; fax: (304) 558-4609

The West Virginia Development Office and the West Virginia Council for Community and Economic Development will review completed applications. The West Virginia Infrastructure and Jobs Development Council will give final approval.