The Minnesota High Tech Association has received $125,000 from the U.S. Small Business Administration to help underrepresented entrepreneurs in SBA’s Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer Programs and increase participation for women-owned, rural-based, and socially and economically disadvantaged firms.

In total, the SBA granted 24 awards up to $125,000 per recipient in FY 2019 under its Federal and State Technology (FAST) Partnership Program. 

“Minnesota has a vibrant tech community and one the SBA sees the value in supporting for our state’s economy,” said SBA Minnesota District Director Nancy Libersky.  “This is the fourth year in a row Minnesota High Tech Association has received a FAST award. This funding will drive innovation and create jobs in Minnesota by helping to get next-generation high-tech firms through the entire cycle of ideation to commercialization.” 

Overall, this is the seventh FAST grant given to the state since 2010. The Minnesota High Tech Association was endorsed by Minnesota’s governor, as only one proposal can be received per state or territory.

Proposals were evaluated by panels of reviewers from SBA, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the Missile Defense Agency, U.S. Navy Office of Naval Research, and the National Institutes of Health. Varying levels of matching funds were required, based on the number of SBIR Phase I awards in each state. 

“SBA FAST funding is critical to deliver our value-added business and technical assistance to innovators, entrepreneurs and small businesses to successfully access millions of dollars to support the next generation of products, services and processes for economic and social impacts.” said Pat Dillon, Director; a 26 year veteran of the SBIR/STTR Programs. 

The FAST awards support specialized training, outreach, mentoring, and technical assistance for R&D focused small businesses and are given to organizations to execute state/regional programs that support potential SBIR applicants and awardees.  They have one-year project and budget periods that begin September 30, 2019.

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