Federal Funding for Small Businesses

SBIR: The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program encourages small businesses to engage in Federal Research/Research and Development (R/R&D) that has the potential for commercialization.

STTR: The Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) is another program that expands funding opportunities in the federal innovation research and development (R&D) arena.

The SBIR/STTR programs — known as "America's Seed Fund" — are set-aside programs to help small businesses develop new technologies and facilitate the commercialization of innovation. Eleven federal agencies participate in these programs and award $2.5 billion each year in competitive grants and contracts to small businesses.

These programs are attractive because they can provide seed funding for early-stage ideas that may still be high risk. They are also attractive because they are not a loan (i.e., no repayment is required) and do not require a stake in equity. However, SBIR/STTR funding can often be leveraged to attract follow-on funding and venture capital.

If you’d like help with developing a successful SBIR/STTR submission, local help is available through Vermont Small Business Development Center (VtSBDC)


Does your business fit the profile of an SBIR/STTR awardee?

Seventeen percent (17%) of awards are made to first-time applicants, and the average company size is 9 employees! Approximately 80% of awardees have 50 or less employees.

Colleges and universities are frequent partners on successful SBIR and STTR awards. Nearly 50% of SBIRs and 95% of STTRs have university involvement.

Partnering with UVM faculty can boost your chances of success by providing access to facilities, resources, and research instrumentation. Furthermore, the addition of recognized scientific/academic expertise can add credibility to your proposal.

Dan Harvey portraitGet in Touch

For more information about this opportunity, please contact Dan Harvey, OVPR Director of Operations, at Dan.Harvey@uvm.edu.

See what else we're doing...

UVM Entrepreneurship

Innovation at UVM