Government Business Grants-Just For The Sake Of Your Business Growth!
There are government grants for business is available. The key is knowing where to look and persistence. The level of complexity and bureaucracy in the government is unfamiliar to many small businesses. However, it is possible to secure a business government grant.
Research and Development (R&D) is a major area for government grants for large and small business. While a large portion of R&D grant money goes to large businesses, Congress has enacted set asides for small business product research.
The Small Business Administration has two programs for small business government grants:
Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) is an allocation of the total federal research funding that goes to small business. SBIR winners are small firms with less than 25 employees. Also, women and minority owned businesses are awarded a significant portion of SBIR grants.
SBIR grants are awarded in two phases. The first phase, a grant of up to $150,000, is given for research of a promising new concept or technology. Businesses who win a Phase I can apply for Phase II funding, which is Research and Development (R&D) to commercialize the product or technology.
There is no SBIR funding to manufacture and market the new product. This part of the process is referred to as Phase III of a SBIR award. However, this is not a grant.The company must find investors or other business government grants to launch their product.
Eleven federal agencies that engage in research have SBIR programs such as: Department of Agriculture, Department of Defense, Department of Energy, Department of Education, Department of Transportation, and more.
Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) is another business government grant opportunity from the Small Business Administration. The STTR helps businesses conduct research, but must partner with a non-profit research institution. The purpose of this grant is to help bridge the gap between academic research (ie. “the ivory tower”) and practical applications of new knowledge.
There are five federal agencies that give STTR grants: Department of Defense, Department of Energy, Department of Health and Human Services, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and National Science Foundation. Each of these agencies release grant announcements and give awards. The Small Business Administration does not give STTR grants itself.
The grant process is similar to the SBIR in that there are three phases of these grants. The award maximums of STTR grants are smaller than the SBIR. Phase I STTR grants are capped at $100,000 and Phase II grants have a $750,000 maximum.