SBA gives $200,000 to support science-, tech-driven companies in Arkansas

by Talk Business & Politics staff ( 32 views 

The Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center (ASBTDC), based at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, has received $200,000 to support its efforts in aiding science-driven small businesses, according to a press release.

The U.S. Small Business Administration awarded the funding as part of its Federal and State Technology (FAST) Partnership Program, designed to stimulate economic development with outreach and technical assistance to science- and technology-driven small businesses, and the ASBTDC is one of five small business technology development centers in the U.S. to receive the grant, according to the release.

“Arkansas has many gifted, creative entrepreneurs and university researchers,” Laura Fine, ASBTDC state director, said in a press release. “We look forward to helping these Arkansas innovators explore and develop the commercial potential of their research and ideas.”

The FAST Partnership Program works to help businesses complete the Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer programs and has a special focus on women-owned and socially and economically disadvantaged firms, according to the release.

“FAST partners fill an important role on the state level, providing training, financial and technical assistance for small, advanced technology businesses, by helping them navigate federally-funded innovation and [research and development] programs,” SBA administrator Linda McMahon said in a statement.

The center said it will use the money to fund its continued one-to-one mentoring efforts for university researchers and small tech companies looking to apply for SBIR and STTR grants and contracts, in addition to hosting 16 educational events on the SBIR And STTR programs. Participants will learn about commercial strategy development, market research and grant proposal writing, according to the press release.