Startups, Start Here: Need Help Getting a Commercialization Grant?

Technology Start Up, Venture Accelator LabMarch 30, 2016

Working on fundamental research with potential commercial impact? Need assistance identifying commercialization grants to fund your research or new venture? At the Venture Acceleration Lab (VAL), we assist faculty, postdocs, graduate and undergraduate students, and entrepreneurs with the identification and pursuit of funding opportunities from federal and other government agencies. This includes grants from SBIR / STTR, ARPA-E, the NSF Partnership for Innovation programs: ‘Accelerating Innovation Research-Technology Transfer’ and ‘Building Innovation Capacity,’ and more. We provide hands-on assistance ranging from identifying funding opportunities and solicitation requirements to effective writing and submitting of competitive proposals.

Using the seven steps below, we can assist you with developing a competitive funding proposal:

  1. Finding the appropriate funding opportunity (grant proposal)
    It is important to identify a grant opportunity that is related to your research. The proposed idea should support the program’s solicitation and interests.
  2. Providing a proposal template
    Government agencies regularly update their solicitation and proposal requirements and it is imperative that you follow them exactly to be considered for funding. At VAL, we provide up-to-date proposal templates to ensure your submission meets the solicitation’s formatting and commercialization strategy requirements.
  3. Developing a commercialization strategy
    As you might expect, a research commercialization section is included in all commercialization grants and, as in the case of Phase II grants, it can be as lengthy as 15 pages. This requires thorough development of the strategy by working with seasoned entrepreneurs and industry professionals in the subject area.
  4. Researching the market and the competitive landscape
    A couple of key points to consider while developing a commercialization grant application are to address the market need and highlight the uniqueness of the proposed innovation by providing a competitive landscape. This establishes an urgency to bring the innovation to market and a justification for the requested funds.
  5. Introducing you to strategic partners
    It is essential to connect with industry leaders and strategic partners to map out a successful commercialization path. Letters of support obtained from these leaders and partners can increase the credibility of the proposed innovation.
  6. Reviewing your proposal
    Before the final submission, we do an in-depth review of your proposal to provide edits, comments, and additional content.
  7. Assisting with follow-up support
    After the proposal submission, we support you with implementing the commercialization strategy and introducing you to and preparing you for private funding opportunities.

We can assist you with all of the aforementioned steps as well as any areas that may be specific to you. If you are planning to pursue a grant, we recommend contacting us at least two months in advance of the submission deadline so we can start developing a commercialization strategy and identifying and connecting with strategic partners. However, we can assist you in whatever stage of the proposal writing process you are in.

To learn more about commercialization grants and the variety of funding resources available to you for your research or your new venture, contact Jack Henkel at the Venture Acceleration Lab.