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November 12, 2010
By Claudene Wharton
The Nevada Small Business Development Center at the University of Nevada, Reno and C4Cube, a Reno-based business incubator, are cohosting a workshop on the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and the Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Programs and other sources of funding for innovative, high-technology companies Dec. 2-3 at John Ascuaga's Nugget in Sparks.
Representatives from four major federal agencies supporting the Small Business Innovation Research Program that provide about $2.6 billion dollars to high-technology companies through a competitive process aimed at securing innovations that meet federal needs will talk about the needs they are seeking to address with their funds.
Presentations will also be made on the specific funding priorities of the Environmental Protection Agency, the National Science Foundation, the Department of Energy, the Department of Transportation and the National Institutes of Health. The Department of Defense and NASA may participate.
Additionally, at least five angel and venture-funding organizations are participating, such as C4Cube, Reno Angels, U.S. Angels, Highway 12 Ventures and the Rocky Mountain Venture Capital Group.
Representatives from three companies that have been successful in obtaining federal grants will also tell their success stories. They will talk about the lessons they learned, issues and problems they encountered, and the benefits of having secured such grants.
Some of the federal agencies and other funding groups will be available to meet with entrepreneurs and innovators in one-on-one sessions, as well as informally on a scheduled basis. Attendees are encouraged to bring their elevator pitches.
Ky Good, the managing director of C4Cube, stresses that while SBIR and STTR funding are valuable sources of funding, many companies with novel approaches and products should also look at angel and venture capital funding sources, which have a broader view of what products can be successful.
Fritz Grupe, the SBIR Program Manager for the Nevada Small Business Development Center at the University’s College of Business says that the workshop can help companies learn how to apply for and win the grants and contracts available. Attendees can learn how to stay on track for success and achieve next- level funding, whether that involves investment capital or sales to the government or private industry.