Problem: The business needed to obtain funding to further develop its product offering. The client had marshaled considerable inexpensive resources using a university venture program; however, more funding was needed to move the project forward quickly enough to take advantage of the market opportunity.
Grant funding is particularly appealing because, unlike a loan, grants do not need to be paid back. However, many grant programs require a cash and/or in-kind match as this ensures committed entrepreneurs.
Action: Prior to the grant proposal, PARTNERS had prepared considerable market and competitive analysis available from secondary sources. PARTNERS also completed initial, insightful primary market research for the client, demonstrating client interest and highlighting important aspects of buying behavior. This ensured that compelling facts and data were available for the seed grant proposal.
Then, PARTNERS worked with the client to prepare the seed grant submission to Maine Technology Institute (MTI). As a Technology Board member who reviews grant and loan applications at MTI, PARTNERS has a unique insight into the information required. We, of course, recuse ourselves for discussions involving any applications we are involved with. We helped the client write specified sections of the proposal and met to review the wording. The start up was a hard to visualize, conceptual business, so PARTNERS focused on succinct messaging, clarity of language, the use of visual language, as well as graphics and supporting documentation, demonstrating customer interest.
Result: The client obtained the requested $17,000 grant from Maine Technology Institute.
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