New Technologies, New Companies Meet Fresh Opportunity

Pete CodellaNews

The Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED) is excited to announce the approval of grants totaling $2,459,700 for 25 startup companies developing new technologies across multiple industries in the state of Utah. GOED’s Technology Commercialization and Innovation Program (TCIP) provides competitive grants to small businesses and university teams to accelerate the commercialization of innovative technologies.

“TCIP is a critical tool for local startups to get initial funding for their businesses,” said Val Hale, executive director of GOED. “These companies not only have innovative products but also have intrepid entrepreneurs that support the backbone of our local economy.”

TCIP helps companies secure non-dilutive funding at important intersections of their funding and commercialization lifecycles, resulting in long-term success and economic development in the state. This year’s grant solicitation was the most competitive in the history of the program with 168 applicants requesting funds in excess of $16 million out of the $2.5 million available.

“Getting this level of funding comes at a critical point in our product launch and enables us to more quickly enter the market with our industry leading technology,” said Mark Stott, CEO of Estar Solutions. “This funding allows us to build a competitive advantage that greatly enhances our growth and will save energy, create jobs and support the Utah economy.”

Applicants are vetted through several volunteer review panels made up of local industry experts. The volunteer review panels recommend funding for the projects based on technical merit, level of matching funds, and potential for job creation and economic development in the state. The companies are awarded grants based on whether they meet required performance metrics. Those metrics may include participating in a mentoring or accelerator program, acquisition of matching funds, or completion of technical or business milestones.

“We use these grants to help very early stage companies put down roots and become the next wave of great Utah companies,” said Thomas Wadsworth, TCIP fund manager. “We reviewed many promising startups. From medical devices, to clean energy, biotechnology and IT, it’s reassuring to see that entrepreneurship continues to be as diverse as our economy.”

In the last five years alone, the TCIP has distributed grants in excess of $6 million and helped more than 180 projects grow in the state. TCIP has been instrumental in the successes of local companies such as Myriad Genetics, BioFire, and Enve Composites.