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Program Manager, Merrie London


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The goal of the SBIR Acceleration and Commercialization program is to increase the participation of Connecticut-based firms in federal SBIR and STTR grant programs. These highly competitive programs improve a small business’ chance of advancing its technology and achieving commercialization and job growth.

About the Program:
The SBIR Acceleration and Commercialization Program has been ongoing since February 2012 providing support to Phase I and Phase II federal SBIR/STTR winners. In 2015, state awards will be made selectively to those companies in which our investment will have a substantial impact on generating revenues and job creation. Connecticut companies that have won SBIR/STTR federal awards in 2014 or 2015 may be eligible for support. Additionally, Connecticut companies may use our funding as a match to compete for substantial non-SBIR awards. (Other federal grants, foundation grants, industry challenges etc.)

Phase I Support
Eligibility for Royalty Agreements up to $100,000
If your company is a Connecticut-based SBIR/STTR federal Phase I winner (2014 or 2015), and has not received prior Phase I support, it is eligible to apply for a repayable grant. CI's repayable grants are awarded selectively to those companies in which our funding provides substantial impact to generating revenues and job creation. Priority is given to early-stage companies. When making our selection, we will consider strongly, whether or not our funding will "move the needle" in a company's growth stage and how likely it is to attract follow-on Phase II funding. (One award per company in 2015)

Phase II Support
Eligibility for Royalty Agreements up to $200,000

Companies that are Connecticut-based SBIR/STTR federal Phase II winners are eligible to apply for CI's Phase II support in the final year of their ongoing federal award. The 2015 goal is to fund promising companies that have a strong likelihood of attracting follow-on funding/investments and, ultimately, achieve commercial success. The funding is also designed to help bridge the “valley of death” by addressing federal funding gaps. In most cases, CI's Phase II support will be used for business development and product launches.

All applications are reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Priority is given to companies using the funding to secure additional SBIR Phase II enhancement awards that require a cash match. The program is competitive. One award per life of the program.

An External Investment (Match) for CI's Phase II Support is Required
When applying for CI's Phase II support, a 50% external match is required. For example, if a company applies for $200,000 it is necessary for the firm to raise an additional $100,000 from external sources. SBIR agencies have encouraged us to have companies demonstrate their ability to raise risk capital to increase their overall chances for success. External investments may not come from federal or state sources.

What is a Royalty Agreement?
Our funding has a conditional repayment obligation. As grantees commercialize their technology, they will be required to repay their CI grants in small installments with interest.

The change from non-restrictive grants to repayable grants will help CI provide investments to SBIR/STTR winners for many years to come. SBIR/STTR recipients will receive Phase I and Phase II support when they need it most – during the early, risky, development stage of their innovation work.

Non-SBIR Support - Up to $200,000
Many of Connecticut's small businesses compete for other large, federal, non-SBIR research grants. Often, these grants ($500,000+) require matching funds from one or more investors. Connecticut Innovations is now expanding its SBIR Acceleration and Commercialization Program to allow small businesses that are competing for other substantial grants to apply for matching funding. Like the Phase II support program, the limit for our investment match is $200,000 and requires a 50% external match. The external match may not come from federal or state sources. (One award per life of the program)

Please contact Merrie London, manager of SBIR and federal leveraging programs

Funding Support Opportunities:

  1. Phase I Support:
  2. Phase II Support:
  3. Non-SBIR Support: Use the Phase II Support Program

Obtaining a Letter of Support for an SBIR Federal Application Submission

If you need a letter of support for your SBIR/STTR application, please do the following:

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