RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK – Bioscience companies in North Carolina that are receiving federal support for research and development will soon have a chance to win matching funds from the state, thanks to new funding for the One NC Small Business Program.

The state’s General Assembly and Gov. Roy Cooper have appropriated $1.5 million to the program for the 2021 fiscal year ending on June 30, 2021.

The One NC Small Business Program helps fund North Carolina businesses in capital-intensive, high-risk industries in science, technology, engineering and math. Companies that win a Phase I federal Small Business Innovation Research or Small Business Technology Transfer grant (SBIR/STTR) will be eligible for matching state grants.

Because the program’s new funding comes from the federal Coronavirus Relief Fund, the state grants may give priority consideration to companies that are conducting coronavirus research, according to the N.C. Department of Commerce’s Office of Science, Technology & Innovation, which administers the One NC Small Business Program.

Details of the matching grants are being finalized and will be posted in early October on the program’s website.

The One NC Small Business Program helps small, innovation-based companies bridge the funding gap between innovation and the marketplace by matching highly competitive federal R&D grants.

Since its inception in 2006, the program has helped 275 small businesses in 25 counties create and maintain more than 900 jobs and leverage more than $500 million in follow-on funding from other sources, yielding a 20-fold return on state investment, according to a 2017 evaluation of the program’s results.

The program was not funded in 2020, but in 2019 it awarded 25 grants totaling $1.2 million to science and technology companies.

(C) N.C. Biotech Center