Governor announces Innovate Alabama’s launch of small business grant program
Special to the Enquirer
MONTGOMERY – Gov. Kay Ivey July 12 announced that the Alabama Innovation Corporation (Innovate Alabama) opened applications for the Innovate Alabama Supplemental Grant Program. Alabama-based recipients of Phase I and Phase II Federal Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) grants are eligible to apply for up to $250,000 in supplemental funding.
In addition to helping the state’s leading entrepreneurs and innovators, dispersing these funds will grow Alabama’s economy by stimulating research and commercialization, developing exportable products and services and creating and retaining high-wage jobs in skilled occupations.
“The Innovate Alabama Supplemental Grant Program is the latest way our state is creating an attractive business environment for pioneering ideas that will change our world,” said Gov. Ivey. “Alabamians have the grit, determination and creativity to make these ideas a reality, and with Innovate Alabama’s supplemental funding, these small businesses will take their ideas from concept to commercialization.”
According to a 2021 report by the U.S. Small Business Administration, Alabama is now among 20 states that have implemented robust supplemental grants for both Phase I and Phase II SBIR/STTR winners.
“Accessible capital is routinely among the greatest needs of our state’s entrepreneurs,” said Alabama Director of Finance and Alabama Innovation Corporation Chair Bill Poole. “Innovate Alabama wants to bridge connections and resources like this grant program to support these innovative small businesses generating transformative research and technology.”
“The Innovate Alabama Supplemental Grant Program is the product of intentional collaboration between Alabama’s innovation ecosystem and my colleagues in the Alabama Legislature,” said state Sen. Greg Reed, President Pro Tempore of the Alabama State Senate and Vice Chair of the Alabama Innovation Corporation. “We passed legislation last year to pave the way for this program, and I am proud to see it come to fruition.”
Eligible applicants have an active Phase I or Phase II SBIR or STTR grant. Phase I recipients are eligible to apply for 50 percent of their award up to $100,000. Phase II recipients are eligible to apply for 50 percent of their award up to $250,000. Innovate Alabama Supplemental Grant Program awards are non-dilutive, meaning businesses receive the money without giving up shares of their company.
“Small businesses that have secured SBIR/STTR grants from federal agencies benefit from their technologies already having been subject to scientific review from experts,” said Dr. Michael Chambers, Associate Vice President for Research at the University of South Alabama and Alabama Innovation Corporation Board Member. “Alabama’s supplemental funding program is an excellent way for our state to grow our economy by investing in local technologies that may have global impacts.”
The application for the first round of funding opened July 1. Applicants are strongly encouraged to apply by 5 p.m. on Aug. 1, 2022. Award notifications for the first round of funding begin Aug. 22. To learn more and apply, visit innovatealabama.org/programs.