Funds For Business Startups-Grants

Starting a business requires seed money for start-up costs, equipment purchases and materials, rental of office or building space or purchase of land, business fees, salaries and other operating costs. Business expansion also requires on-going funds. Raising capital is hard these days because banks have tight lending requirements, venture capitalist money is harder to find and many entrepreneurs are having to use their own personal savings funds or ask friends or relatives to invest. What many business owners are not aware of is that there are millions of dollars available in business start-up grants from the federal, state, municipal and private organizations and corporations that can be used for start-up capital purposes. The government alone has 26 federal agencies that deal with grant opportunities. Programs offer funds for business start-up, consultation, business expansion, research, development and small loans so that businesses of all types and sizes can compete. The government recognizes the value of new business start-ups wants to give grants to start a business to a variety of businesses.

Federal Grants

The Department of Agriculture sponsors grants through the Broadband Initiatives Program which helps companies build broadband infrastructures in rural areas with less than 20,000 residences. Private businesses, excluding sole proprietorships, partnerships and limited liability companies, are eligible for this type of grant by applying to the Broadband Initiatives Program, Rural Utilities Service, Department of Agriculture, 1400 Independence Avenue SW, Stop 1599, Washington, D.C. 20250 or calling them at 202-690-0525. For more information, grantees can go to the broadbandusa.gov website.

The Department of Health and Human Services sponsors grants for research regarding vision loss in the United States. Grants can be used for research, travel expenses, consultation fees, patient costs, supplies, materials, salaries and facility renovations. Small businesses and for profit companies are also eligible to apply for this grant by writing to Grants Management Branch, National Eye Institute, National Institutes of Health, Department of Health and Human Services

Room 1300,5635 Fishers Lane, Bethesda, MD 20892-1900, or calling them at 301-451-2020 or visiting their website at nei.nih.gov.

The Homeland Security Advanced Research Projects Agency provides grants for businesses regarding research and development of science and technology products and services that promote homeland security. The funds may be used to test, develop, and use of technologies to solve homeland security vulnerabilities. Eligible applicants include private entities, businesses, individuals, groups and for-profit organization. For more information, grantees can apply to the Grants and Financial Assistance Division, Office of Procurement Operations, Department of Homeland Security, Building 410, 245 Murray Lane SW, Washington, District of Columbia 20528, or call them at 202-447-5589 or visit their website at dhs.gov.

Small Business Administration

The Small Business Administration provides grants and loans for businesses for research, development, job training and technology. Grants and loans are also available to minorities such as women, African Americans and Hispanic Americans. For more information, applicants can visit the Small business Administration website.

States and Municipalities

States and local municipalities get grant money from the federal government and then give it to local and regional businesses for various start-up costs, business expansion, job training and technology to compete with other larger businesses and to develop new ideas and technology.

Private organizations and corporations also provide grant monies that they receive from government grants or private donors to enable businesses to do research and development, provide jobs and training.

Grant money is free and does not have to be repaid to the funder like loans do. However, there may be requirements that the grantee must meet, and the grantee may be subject to reporting requirements as well. Business start-up grants provide the needed funds for businesses to grow and expand and for new businesses to start so that jobs can be created and new technologies and services developed that provide benefits to the entire community and the country.