Two of Willamette Week’s “31 reasons to love Portland” are startup focused

There are any number of reasons to love Portland. But it’s rare to see anything startups making the citywide lists. That’s why it was nice to see Willamette Week highlighting a couple of interesting reasons to love the Portland startup community.

Portland Is Making An Effort to Diversify the Cannabis Industry

In a proud moment for the state’s recreational cannabis program, two Black-owned businesses recently were awarded $30,000 apiece in grants—the first instance of tax revenue from cannabis sales going back to the communities negatively impacted by racially biased cannabis criminalization.… The pivotal moment was facilitated by NuLeaf, a nonprofit working to increase successful outcomes for cannabis entrepreneurs of color.

Portland Helped Jumpstart the Movement That’s Changing the Tech Industry

It is not, [Mara] Zepeda stresses, simply an opposition movement. By forming a united front behind startups and firms dedicated to alternative means of financing—whether in the form of equity investments, profit-based loans or other inventive measures—the goal is to spread the idea that there’s more than one way to grow a business. The organization recently partnered with Institute for the Future, a think tank in Palo Alto, Calif., to directly develop new structures for raising capital.

Need more reasons to love Portland? Read more about these two and the other 29 in 31 Reasons To Love Portland Right Now.