Inclusive Entrepreneurship Support Grant

The Inclusive Entrepreneurship Support Grant will deploy $8.8 Million in funding to support small business development initiatives across the state. The MEDC will administer this initiative to bring new and more comprehensive resources to small businesses by providing direct grant support to entrepreneurs for expanding operations. Eligible uses could include, but are not limited to, construction, obtaining new equipment, talent development, manufacturing, and operating costs.


Additional Program Information

The Inclusive Entrepreneurship Support Grant is seeking the projects with the greatest impact on economic prosperity factoring in:

  • Job Creation/Retention
  • Regional Impact
  • New Contracts or Revenue
  • Project Wages
  • Leveraging Other Federal, State, Local Funding

Eligibility Criteria:

Each applicant must:

  • Be registered to do business in Michigan
  • Be a small Business with 500 employees or less
  • Be in good standing with all state departments including, but not limited to, LARA and the Michigan Department of Treasury

Be in at least one strategic sector including:

  • Urban and Rural Mobility Electrification and EV Charging Infrastructure*
  • Clean Energy*
  • Infrastructure, including Affordable Housing and Regional/Public Transit*
  • Post-Secondary Education Attainment*
  • Talent Attraction and Retention*
  • Healthcare Innovation*
  • Childcare*
  • Advanced Manufacturing - Defense, Aerospace, Advanced Materials
  • Mobility and Automotive Manufacturing
  • Semiconductor Technology
  • Cybersecurity
  • Life Sciences and Medical Devices
  • Engineering, Design, & Development
  • Professional and Corporate Services

*Sectors with an asterisk will be given additional consideration.

Meet at Least One of the Following Qualification Criteria (definitions of each criteria)

  • Located in Geographically Disadvantaged Business Area: An eligible business location will be identified as a blue or orange shaded area on the GDA map. You may qualify your business location eligibility by typing in your business address in the address field in the upper right corner of the map that opens when you click the link HERE.
  • Veteran Owned Business: Have no less than 51% of the business owned and controlled by one or more veterans
  • Service-Disabled Veteran Owned Business: Have no less than 51% of the business owned and controlled by one or more veterans rated as service-disabled by the VA
  • Limited English Proficiency (LEP): Have no less than 51% of the business owned and controlled by one or more individuals who do not speak English as their primary language and who have a limited ability to read, speak, write, or understand English can be limited English proficient, or "LEP."
  • Disability: Have no less than 51% of the business owned and controlled by one or more individuals with a disability
  • Member of the LGBTQIA+ Community: Have no less than 51% of the business owned and controlled by one or more individuals who are a member of the LGBTQIA+ community

Program Goals:

The Inclusive Entrepreneurship Support Grant is intended for disadvantaged entrepreneurs in strategic sectors who meet at least one of the following qualification criteria (definitions of each criteria is in the Instructions section below):

  • Located in a Geographic Disadvantaged Business Area
  • Veteran Status
  • Service-Disabled Veteran
  • Limited English Proficiency
  • Disability
  • Member of the LGBTQIA+ community

Funds are awarded at the discretion of the MEDC for the purposes of driving economic competitiveness and regional impact. Applicants may submit funding requests between $250,000 and $2,500,000. MEDC anticipates making between 10 and 20 grants.

Eligible applicants that address competitiveness measures, as well as include key performance indicators for community and economic development impact will score higher for this funding opportunity.

The application is open from 2/5/24 to 3/1/24. This is not a first-come, first-served funding opportunity. Selected grantees will have until 3/31/2028 to complete the projects proposed.

Application

This is a highly competitive funding opportunity. Applicants may submit funding requests between $250,000 and $2,500,000. MEDC anticipates making between 10 and 20 grants. Click on the button below to apply.

Apply Now

Eligible Costs and Activities:

Eligible costs include, but are not limited to, hard costs for construction for the project, payroll and other operating costs, infrastructure, machinery, equipment, tooling, computers, furniture, fixtures, lease payments, costs related to talent recruitment and job training. Other costs may be considered at the discretion of the MEDC. “Hard Costs” means the Company’s actual expenditure of funds for the Project for at least one, or any combination of, the following the following six (6) categories:

  • Demolition/Land Acquisition. Any fees or costs for demolition, removal, or disposal of any existing buildings, structures, machinery, equipment, and fixtures at and for the Project, and the cost to purchase the real property at the Project;
  • New construction. Any fees or costs for construction of new buildings, structures, improvements, and fixtures at and for the Project;
  • Other Alteration, Improvement, or Rehabilitation. Any fees or costs for other alterations, improvements, or rehabilitations of existing buildings, structures, improvements, and fixtures at the Project;
  • Site Improvement. Any fees or costs for site improvements to the Project, including parking lots, parking garages, parking ramps, utilities, improvements, and infrastructure, such as roads, curbs, gutters, sidewalks, landscaping, lighting, tree clearing, grading, earthwork, and land balancing;
  • Machinery and Equipment. Any fees or cost for the addition, removal, disposal, or modification of machinery, equipment, special tooling, furniture, fixtures at the Project;
  • Professional Fees. Professional fees or costs for architectural services, engineering services, environmental services, surveying services; or other. Any utility tap and construction fees, and fees and costs paid to a governmental entity for permits, zoning, and inspections in connection with the foregoing activities at and for the Project.

Fund Disbursement:

This is a reimbursement-based program, with 50% of funds advanced. An initial disbursement of 50% of the Grant funds shall be made by the MEDC to the Grantee within ninety days of execution of this Agreement by both Parties (the “Initial Payment”). Additional funds shall only be disbursed after verification that the previous payment has been expended, in full, in accordance with this Agreement and Grantee’s Budget, including providing appropriate supporting documentation. A second, and final, payment of the remaining 50% of the Grant funds under this Agreement shall be made by the MEDC to Grantee upon receipt and approval by the Grant Administrator of Grantee’s supporting documentation showing that the remaining costs for which payment is requested have been appropriately expended in accordance with Grantee’s Budget.

Optional Letters of Support

Applicants may submit optional letters of support to help demonstrate the strength of their application through highlighting strategic partnerships, community or industry support, and/or economic impact to: iesg@michigan.org.

Questions?

Please review Frequently Asked Questions here. You can submit questions to: iesg@michigan.org.