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SBA Presents “SBIR/STTR Opportunity Expo” Sept. 28 at Pennovation Center in Philadelphia

Advisory Date: 
Thursday, September 8, 2016
Advisory Number: 
Robert Goza (610) 382-3084 |
NASA, USDA, DOE and NSF provide information on how small businesses may receive federal agency research grant funding

PHILADELPHIAThe U.S. Small Business Administration presents the “SBIR/STTR Opportunity Expo” Sept. 28 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., at the Pennovation Center, 3401 Grays Ferry Ave, Philadelphia, Pa. SBA encourages small businesses creating or refining new technologies who are interested in federal grants to register now at This event is open to the media.

Small businesses will have the opportunity to meet with NASA, USDA, Department of Energy and the National Science Foundation to explore federal Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs that provide federal grant funds for research and development. The Pennsylvania Small Business Development Center Network and members of the Pennsylvania Innovation Partnerships will also be on hand to assist with additional resources.

WHO:        Businesses interested in R&D grants from NASA, USDA, the National Science Foundation, Department of Energy

WHAT:      FREE SBIR/STTR Opportunity Expo

WHEN:      Sept. 28, 2016, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

WHERE:   Pennovation Center (Parking is FREE), 3401 Grays Ferry Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19146

REGISTRATION: Register now at

Administered by the U.S. Small Business Administration, the SBIR/STTR program – often referred to as “America’s seed fund” – enables groundbreaking small business innovation in support of the eleven funding agencies: Environmental Protection Agency, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, National Science Foundation and the U.S. Departments of Agriculture, Commerce, Defense, Education, Energy, Health and Human Services, Home Land Security and Transportation.

These federal agencies put billions of dollars to work across America supporting 150,000 awards and counting, and totaling over $42 billion since the programs’ inception. SBA’s SBIR/STTR programs catalyze and seed the creation of STEM driven innovations in industries critical to the nation’s long-term competitiveness and growth ranging from nanotech to robotics, mobile communications, genetic therapies, clean energy, advanced weapons and space exploration. Many of today’s technology giants – or their underlying technological components – received seed funding through SBIR or STTR awards via the eleven participating federal agencies.

“Helping high growth entrepreneurship take hold here in the U.S. is an important focus for SBA and the SBIR/STTR funding agencies. Small businesses are the key to advancing America’s economy by bringing cutting-edge, high-impact technologies to the marketplace that improve health care, strengthen our military and protect the environment,” said Michael T. Kane, Deputy Director, U.S. Small Business Administration’s Eastern Pennsylvania District. “However, small businesses often have difficulty competing with larger technology companies due to lack of capital for research and development (R&D) work that is critical for moving products from the planning to deployment stages. That’s where SBA and the SBIR/STTR program come in; ensuring engagement and access to non-dilutive capital for STEM-driven small businesses is key to generating private-public innovation.”

To help entrepreneurs successfully commercialize their products and services, the federal government established the Small Business Innovation Research/Small Business Technology Transfer program, commonly known as SBIR. While SBA doesn’t directly administer the SBIR funding awards, it oversees and manages the SBIR program by coordinating with other agencies, reviewing progress and reporting to Congress.

To be eligible for SBIR assistance, businesses must:

  • Be organized for profit and be located in the United States
  • Be at least 50% owned and controlled by U.S. citizens or permanent residents
  • Have no more than 500 employees
  • Not be controlled by a venture capital firm, hedge fund or private equity firm that owns a majority of the stock

Much like the product development process, SBIR is structured in phases:

  • Phase 1 establishes the technical merit, feasibility and commercial potential of products or services and lasts for six months
  • Phase 2 supports continued R&D efforts and extends up to two years. Funding levels are based on the success of Phase 1 work
  • Phase 3 enables the small businesses to commercialize products or services. Although SBIR does not fund Phase 3, some federal agencies may provide additional financial assistance for products and services that help achieve government research goals

SBA recently unveiled a newly revamped gateway web portal ( that now more effectively links the platform with USAID’s Global Innovation Exchange, among others, to enhance channels of opportunities for small business firms to act locally, but think globally from day one. The site now makes it easier for high tech entrepreneurs to locate viable funding opportunities from agencies as big as DOD and as small as EPA. Learn more about eligibility requirements and explore open and future solicitations from agencies throughout the federal government to find SBIR funding opportunities for your small business today at


To request interviews or photos, contact Robert Goza, SBA’s Public Information Officer in the Eastern Pennsylvania District Office, at 610-382-3084 or

The U.S. Small Business Administration is an independent federal agency of the U.S. government whose mission is to help small businesses start, grow and succeed through loan guarantees, contracts, counseling sessions and other forms of assistance to small businesses. SBA also helps people recover from disasters and rebuild their lives by providing affordable, timely and accessible financial assistance to homeowners, renters and businesses.