Small business grants are available at the federal government and private foundation levels for entrepreneurs and private owners seeking grants for small business. While it may seem obvious to those of us already working in a small business, the federal government has very strict mandates on what constitutes a small business, and thus who can apply for small business grants.
The United States federal government has strict criterion which must be met in their definition of a small business. Government grants are funded by your tax dollars and,
therefore, require very stringent compliance and reporting measures to ensure the awarded money is well spent. As you can imagine, small business grants are not given away indiscriminately. Since all federal agencies that offer grants for small business use United States Small Business Administration size standards for all contracts identified as small business grants, loans and more; owners and entrepreneurs need to select NAICS codes that best describe the business and then further determine if the
business meets size standards for the selected NAICS codes.
The North American Industry Classification System developed under the direction and guidance of the Office of Management and Budget is the standard for use by Federal statistical agencies in classifying business establishments for the collection and analysis
of statistical data describing the United States economy as a whole. This definition, which actually varies by geographic area, contains common grants for small business grants award elements such as:
- Is organized for profit;
- Has a place of business in the US;
- Operates primarily within the U.S. or makes a significant contribution to the U.S. economy through payment of taxes or use of American products, materials or labor;
- Is independently owned and operated; and
- Is not dominant in its field on a national basis.
While the federal government will not provide business startup capital, they do offer grants for small business in the form of awards from sub-entities, loans and procurement contracts. Of course when exploring available federal grants for small business, your first stop post registration is the federal government Internet funding portal at Grants.Gov.
Here you can locate and research small business grants offered by such entities as the Small Business Administration, the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Department of Commerce, just to name a few. Millions upon millions of dollars
of federal funding opportunities in the form of small business grants are available for review.
Select private and family foundations also provide grants for small business who share the same mission goals for the betterment of humanity. The Advanta Foundation’s business focus is helping small businesses and business professionals grow in select areas by offering grants for small business. The Intuit Foundation Intuit forms
collaborative relationships with targeted nonprofits who in turn offer small business grants to entrepreneurs dedicated to making a lasting impact on the social issues frontier.
As you can see, small business grants are available at the federal government and private foundation levels for entrepreneurs and private owners seeking grants for small business. The savvy business owner will take time to explore and research all available funding opportunities available in the form of small business grants.