Small business grants, in general, are some amount of money that is made available for business owners or entrepreneurs to start a new business or to develop an already existing one. Such grants are usually issued one time, in the form of cash awards, and can be anywhere between $500, also known as mini grants, up to $2500 realistic loans or even more in some instances.
As small business grants are offered in limited numbers and only in specific geographic locations, it is very difficult for people to locate them and most business persons do not even know that such grants are available in the market. There are a number of businesses initiated every passing year with the help of small business grants, which are found to come from a wide range of sources. Given in this article are some important facts that you should know when planning to apply for a small business grant.
Firstly, you should be aware that no grants are offered by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) for the startup or expansion of a business. Whenever you start thinking about taking out a grant to fund your business, the first thought that would strike your mind will be government grants. But, it is important for you to note that the SBA does not issue grants for starting a new business or expanding your business, which is clearly specified on its official website.
This federal government organization has the right to issue grants only to educational and nonprofit organizations, but not to small business organizations.
However, if your small business conducts scientific research and development (R&D), then you may be qualified for obtaining funds from certain programs conducted by the government. The Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) and the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) are two types of grants issued by the federal government to fund small businesses that deal with high technology. Such businesses are often referred to be high-tech startups, high-impact firms, or high-growth firms.
STTR and SBIR are both of high competence, of which the SBIR program motivates small business organizations of the United States to engage in the research and development (R&D) of products or services that can accelerate commercialization, and the STTR program extends the opportunities for obtaining funds in the field of R&D.
Small business grants are mainly funded by local government agencies, business groups, large corporations, and nonprofit organizations. If your business does not specialize in the research and development of latest technology, then you should probably look for business grants from nonprofit organizations, local and state programs, or from a wide variety of other funding groups. There are also states that extend their funding through grants for improving tourism by the development of marketing campaigns, coming up with technology that is energy efficient, and also for augmenting child care centers.
If you are an entrepreneur looking for funding options by way of small business grants for starting or expanding your business, the above details would have been of great help to you. Locating the sources of these grants could be quite a daunting task, but the rewards you obtain from them would definitely be worth the effort.