Learn How to Obtain Federal Grants at Regional SBIR/STTR Summer Session in Portland on July 16th

June 11, 2015 | President’s blog

I am pleased to announce that MTI’s Regional Small Business Innovation Research/Small Business Technology Transfer (SBIR/STTR) Summer Session conference will be held at the Clarion Hotel in Portland, Maine on Thursday, July 16, 2015. The MTI Summer Session is the opportunity for federal agencies to meet with small businesses and research organizations in Maine to provide information and answer questions about their respective SBIR/STTR grant programs.

Representatives of seven federal agencies and departments will be present during Summer Session 2015, including the National Science Foundation, Department of Energy, Department of Agriculture, Department of Homeland Security, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency and, additionally, invitations have been extended to the Missile Defense Agency and NASA. A general SBIR/STTR program overview will be provided at the outset and each agency will then discuss the nuances of their respective programs and also their specific research topics of interest. Attendees will be able to schedule one-on-one meetings with each of the agency representatives. The cost to attend is $20 and includes a light breakfast and lunch. To register, please visit our website.

SBIR/STTR is an annual small business set-aside of more than $2 billion to foster early stage, high risk research & development leading to the commercialization of innovative products, processes or services. Eleven federal agencies participate in the program and issue solicitations throughout the year. Companies can submit proposals if their technology addresses the solicitation topic. The SBIR/STTR program has three phases:

  • Phase I is feasibility – will my idea work? Awards are up to $150,000 for a six month period of performance.
  • Phase II is prototype development and awards are up to $1,000,000 for a two year development effort.
  • Phase III is commercialization and there is no SBIR/STTR funding but other federal and state money may help companies bring their technology to market.

Helping Maine companies win SBIR/STTR grants is a strategic goal of the Maine Technology Institute. To this end, MTI hosts the annual SBIR Summer Session, conducts SBIR/STTR seminars and webinars throughout the year, offers the Phase 0 KickStarter grant, and provides guidance from experts with a deep base of knowledge of all federal agency SBIR/STTR programs. More than 90 Maine companies working with MTI have won SBIR/STTR grants totaling more than $88 million since MTI began this program in 2000.


MTI has found that companies are more successful when they understand the SBIR/STTR program basics and how each agency manages its respective program. That is why we encourage companies to attend the Regional Summer Session. The SBIR/STTR application process can be challenging but companies don’t have to go it alone. MTI has a great Technical Assistance Program (TAP) that helps companies navigate the proposal preparation process and helps them submit compelling proposals – all at no cost to the small business.


In addition to the TAP program, MTI also offers Phase 0 KickStarter funds to companies needing help in defraying the costs of writing the Phase I proposal. KickStarter grants are available for up to $5,000 and can be used for activities like hiring grant writers to help fashion the proposal or subject matter experts to conduct market research. Applications for a KickStarter awards are accepted anytime and require a simple two page application.

If you’re interested in learning more about the SBIR/STTR program and how MTI can help you, please view the slides from the workshop or simply call or email me.

Hope to see you on the 16th!

Karen West, MTI’s Lead SBIR/STTR

Consultant & Coordinator of the

Technical Assistance Program (TAP)

(207) 845-2934

[email protected]