The Federal and State Technology (FAST) Partnership Program is currently offering funding aimed at boosting the development of technology within small businesses. In total, they plan to disperse $3 million dollars in funding—$125,000 per applicant.
According to Al Titone, the SBA’s New Jersey district director, “a $125,000 grant will go a long way in helping even more small business owners secure SBIR/STTR grants, helping them further develop technology that is currently in the early developmental stages.”
The grants will be dispersed to businesses who promise to provide outreach, financial support, and technical assistance to those seeking to receive SBIR/STTR awards. According to the SBIR’s website, “the program places particular emphasis on helping women, socially/economically disadvantaged individuals, and applicants from underrepresented or rural areas compete in the SBIR and STTR programs.”
The types of organizations eligible to apply for these grants include state and local economic development agencies, Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs), accelerators, incubators, Women’s Business Centers, Procurement Technical Assistance Centers (PTACs), colleges, and universities.
Any organization who applies for a grant will become part of a program that has successfully led to significant innovations already. “The SBIR/STTR program helped develop robotic technology that’s currently being used to explore Mars and has been instrumental in the development of 3D printing technology,” says Beth Goldberg, Director of the New York District SBA Office. “In 2017, a total of $95.2 million in SBIR Grants went to 127 New York small businesses.”
The success of this program is indicative of the revitalization of small business technology development. Businesses have struggled in the past to find ways to finance their technological research. Even today, many businesses are unaware of SBIR and STTR technology awards – but as the FAST Partnership Program has taken hold, more and more businesses have been able to take advantage of the awards available to them.
Organizations interested in participating in this program need to have their applications submitted by June 20th.