Small Business Administration Announces a Startup America Entrepreneurial Mentor Corps

The Small Business Administration (SBA) announced a new pilot program that will to support more than 1,000 startup and earlystage firms across the country. The goal of the Entrepreneurial Mentor Corps' (EMC) is to mobilize members of the current generation of successful business owners to mentor and support startups and entrepreneurs to help them become the next generation of great American companies. In February, SBA Administrator Karen Mills announced one of the EMC's first initiatives to match approximately 100 clean energy startups with mentors.

New SBA Program Will Increase Availability of Small Loans for Small Businesses

Starting in the spring, a new Small Business Association (SBA) loan program — the Community Advantage loan program— will increase the availability of loans (up to $250,000) to: 1) small businesses, 2) firms that are less than two-years old or 3) those owned by veterans. The program specifically will target businesses in low- to moderate-income communities. Currently, small businesses face difficulty receiving loans of this size due to perceived risk involved (historically high default rates).

SBA Official to Address SSTI Conference

Regular readers of the Digest know that over the last year, SBA has launched a set of new programs and initiatives, including support for cluster development, changes to the SBIC application process, the revival of the FAST program, and a request for information on mentoring and entrepreneurship education for high-growth companies.

SBA Announces 2010 FAST Award Recipients

Twenty universities and organizations received $100,000 grants to support R&D and small business innovation under the U.S. Small Business Administration's FAST program. The program is designed to stimulate economic development among small, high-tech businesses through federally-funded innovation and R&D programs such as the SBIR and STTR programs. The project and budget periods are for 12 months beginning Sept. 30, 2010, according to a press release.

House SB Committee Releases Draft SBIR Bill at Hearing; SSTI Testifies

A brief two-year reauthorization, bigger award sizes, VC eligibility clarification, and a $10 million grant program for state/local outreach assistance are included in the draft SBIR reauthorization bill circulated by the House Committee on Small Business Chairwoman Nydia Velazquez during the third hearing on the topic, held March 13.
The SBIR program will sunset Sept. 30, 2008, if reauthorization legislation is not passed by Congress and signed by the president before then.
Bigger Awards, Fewer Winners

SBA Names FY 2004 FAST, ROP Winners

Earlier this week, 22 states and Puerto Rico were named recipients of more than $2.2 million in combined fiscal year 2004 Federal and State Technology Partnership (FAST) and Rural Outreach Program (ROP) awards. All but one of the 21 FAST awards distributed by the Small Business Administration (SBA) were worth $95,000 -- they totaled nearly $1.98 million. Five ROP awards of $49,470 also were made by SBA.


Congress Eliminates Funding for FAST and ROP

Within the past hour, SSTI has learned that Congress zeroed out the $3.5 million for two programs that supported state SBIR/STTR technical assistance efforts. The omission of any mention in the FY 2003 Omnibus Appropriations Conference Report of funding for the Federal and State Technology Partnership (FAST) and Rural Outreach Program (ROP) was not a mistake in the draft as originally thought by the programs' proponents.


SBA Awards FY 2002 FAST Winners

The Small Business Administration (SBA) recently named 27 states winners of the second Federal and State Technology Partnership (FAST) awards. At $100,000 each, the awards totaled $2.7 million. Created in December 2000 legislation that reauthorized the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Program, FAST provides matching funds to enable states to augment or expand their tech business assistance and SBIR outreach efforts. The FY 2002 winners are:


2002 FAST Solicitation Released

Through the 2002 Federal and State Technology Partnership (FAST) solicitation, the Small Business Administration (SBA) anticipates making up to 27 awards to state efforts to stimulate and encourage broader participation in Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs.


SBIR/STTR Rural Outreach Awards Made

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has selected 10 states to receive continuation awards of up to $47,000 for the SBIR/STTR Rural Outreach Program. The three-year-old program provides matching grants to states to establish or expand programs to assist small high technology businesses to increase their participation and success in SBIR and STTR programs through training, counseling and outreach.



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