MTI offers grants, loans, equity investments, and services to businesses, organizations, and entrepreneurs to support Maine’s innovation economy. While there are exceptions, these are our general guidelines for innovators seeking MTI funding.
Your MTI team member can help you determine what types of work are likely to be approved and the amount of funding to request.
These recommendations are based on:
- Your VIRAL assessment
- How likely you are to meet the criteria to higher investment ranges
- The economic impact potential of the business to Maine
- Your organizational needs
Our goal is to help our clients identify their most urgent needs and maximize their chances of accelerating a successful launch of their innovative product, services, or process into the marketplace, or the accelerated scaling of an existing innovation.
The larger the funding request, the more thorough the due diligence or review required – which can include financial review, business model review, and/or technology review. Note that MTI considers your total cumulative funds to determine the level of review.
Areas of Review
The MTI team reviews all proposals in six categories:
Economic Impact Potential
Will additional Maine-based jobs be created? How will revenue grow? Will additional investment be attracted? What are possible secondary economic impacts?
Who is the team, what are their qualifications, will they be able to successfully execute the proposed Scope of Work? What experiences do they have with the market?
Innovation and Value Proposition
Are the problem and solution clear? How is this solution different? Will it scale?
Customer and Market
Is there evidence that there is a market for this innovation? Is there the ability to capture that market?
What does success look like? How will this make money? How does this connection to MTI’s stated goals? What is the management structure?
Scope of Work/Budget
What do you plan to do? Is the timeline realistic? Will the planned activities accelerate the achievement of goals? Are there measurable and realistic outcomes? Is there at least 1–1 matching funds available?
MTI will assign each category a rating of Green, Yellow, Orange, or Red. Once each category is graded, the entire proposal will receive an overall grade.
There are four grades:
Recommend funding. There is an obvious path to success with no determined obstacles and this project is fully aligned with MTI’s mission and goals. Category scores are majority Greens, potentially with a few Yellows.
Recommend funding, potentially with contingencies. There is a clear path with more opportunities than obstacles, and the project is aligned with MTI’s mission and goals. Scores are all Yellows and Greens.
Recommend Decline, with potential to resubmit. There are more obstacles than opportunities, and/or it’s not clear how MTI’s mission and goals are incorporated. Category scores may include some Yellow and Green but are mostly Oranges and Reds.
Recommend Decline. This project is not aligned with MTI’s mission and impact goals or there is no visible path to success as currently designed. Individual scores are majority Reds with some Oranges and few Yellows.
As funding requests grow, there are additional expectations in each category. For example, for a funding request of less than $25,000, MTI’s would expect your ‘Team Ability’ to include key skills and the ability to produce a low fidelity prototype or pilot program. For larger funding requests, MTI would expect your team’s size and knowledge to have grown to include an understanding of how the market operates, the value chain and corporate governance.
Your MTI team member will help you determine what size and type of application could be a good fit.