The U.S. Commerce Department is searching for innovative ideas to benefit minority-owned business, and it plans to deploy up to $11.65 million in grants to fund and implement projects.
The Minority Business Development Agency is soliciting proposals that will positively impact minority-owned businesses and the communities they serve. Ideas could range from projects to increase access to capital to resources for increased disaster preparedness.
The agency aims to equip minority-owned firms to create jobs, build scale and capacity, increase revenues, and expand regionally, nationally and internationally. Services are provided through a network of MBDA Business Centers.
The MBDA’s Broad Agency Announcement is open to for-profit entities (including but not limited to sole-proprietorships, partnerships, limited liability companies and corporations), nonprofit organizations, institutions of higher education, commercial organizations, individuals, state and local government entities, or American Indian tribal governments.
“Minority business enterprises play a key role in our expanding economy as they not only provide over 7 million jobs in the United States but also contribute billions to the national GDP,” said Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross.
MBDA’s key priorities include:
- Access to capital
- American Indian, Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian entities and/or initiatives
- Disaster readiness
- Disaster recovery
- Entrepreneurship education program for formerly incarcerated persons
- Global Minority Women Economic Empowerment Initiative
- Historically Black Colleges & Universities Initiative
- Inclusive Infrastructure Initiative
- Space commerce
- Sustainable business model
- Technology transfer and commercialization
- Virtual business centers
A pre-application teleconference to educate potential applicants about the federal funding opportunity announcement is scheduled for 1-2 p.m. CDT on June 21. MBDA encourages applicants to attend a pre-application teleconference.
The deadline to submit completed applications for the broad agency announcement is 10:59 p.m. CDT on July 11. Applicants are encouraged to submit applications as soon as possible to receive funding for Fiscal Year 2018.