• Request ~$20M in funding
  • Assist in the preparation and submission of ~75 Phase I and Phase II proposals
  • Secure up to $5M within 12-18 months (15-20% national success rate)
  • Secure up to $6M in additional SBIR/STTR Phase II or Phase IIB funding within 24-36 months

The SBIR/STTR Accelerator application is used to determine if your company and project(s) are a good fit for the programs.  We will evaluate whether your company and proposed project(s) show promise of commercial and/or societal impact and involve a level of technical risk that is required to be competitive in the programs.


  1. Scientific or Technical Publications/Articles: List three to five relevant peer reviewed scientific or technical publications that support your technological innovation and its commercial potential.  All SBIR/STTR proposals include either a reference list or a bibliography in the research proposal.
  2. The Technology Innovation. (Up to 500 words): Describe the technical innovation that would be the focus of a project, including a brief discussion of the origins of the innovation as well as explanation as to why it meets the program’s mandate to focus on supporting research and development (R&D) of unproven, high-impact innovations.
  3. The Technical Objectives and Challenges. (Up to 500 words): Describe the R&D or technical work to be done in a project, including a discussion of how and why the proposed work will help prove that the product or service is technically feasible and/or significantly reduce technical risk. Discuss how, ultimately, this work could contribute to making the new product, service, or process commercially viable and impactful. This section should also convey that the proposed work meets the definition of R&D, rather than straightforward engineering or incremental product development tasks.
  4. The Market Opportunity. (Up to 250 words): Describe the customer profile and pain point(s) that will be the near-term commercial focus related to this technical project. (For Department of Defense SBIR/STTR projects add what you know about the dual purpose of the technology (military and commercial).
  5. The Company and Team. (Up to 250 words): Describe the background and current status of the applicant small business, including key team members who will lead the technical and/or commercial efforts.  Include your corporate and intellectual property counsel, accounting firm, and any other business or scientific advisors.


  • Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), National Institutes of Health (NIH)
  • Department of Defense (DOD) 
  • National Science Foundation (NSF) 
  • Department of Energy (DOE); referral to the free DOE Phase 0 Technical Assistance Program.
  • General Cohorts; For agencies EPA, DOC, USDA, DOT, DHS, DoEdu and NASA


DHHS NIH SBIR/STTR Cohort:  By participating in the cohort classroom training and coaching sessions, you will receive the guidance and direction to prepare and submit a high-quality research proposal.  The course content and coaching includes:

  • DHHS NIH SBIR/STTR General Overview
  • Funding Opportunity Announcements
  • Electronic Registrations
  • Program Director Communications
  • Institute/Study Section Selection
  • Research Area – Topic Selection (Waived vs Non-Waived)
  • Clinical Trial vs Non-Clinical Trial
  • Planning the R&D Project
  • Proposal Requirements
  • Project Narrative
  • Project Summary
  • Specific Aims
  • Research Strategy
  • Biographical Sketches
  • Indirect Cost Rate Determination
  • MIN-Corps Overview (NSF I-Corps)
  • U of M Tech Transfer Opportunities
  • Working with the U of M
  • Intellectual Property/SBIR Data Rights/Technical Data

Cohort deadline is 5/31/2020.    Course Dates:       6/4/2020, 9 am – 5 pm        6/11/2020, 9 am – 5 pm       6/18/2020, 9 am – Noon

DOD SBIR/STTR Cohort:   The DOD seeks small high technology firms with the R&D capabilities, internal and external, to deliver a technologically advanced solution for their expressed need.  It is vitally important to understand this landscape before investing time and money to seek their funding.  The DOD coaching and advice includes:

  • Prerequisite Requirement:
  • Program Description
  • Proposal Fundamentals
  • Phase I Proposal and Evaluation
  • Phase II Proposal and Evaluation
  • Phase II Enhancement
  • Commercialization Readiness Program
  • Contractual Requirements

NSF SBIR/STTR Cohort:  Your project must be invited by NSF to submit a full proposal to any one of the submission periods (4).  Based on your approved Project Pitch, your firm is automatically approved in our NSF SBIR/STTR Cohort.   As an invited NSF applicant, we provide individual and customized coaching to help you prepare a high quality proposal.    Coaching and advice includes:

  • NSF SBIR/STTR General Overview
  • Electronic Registrations
  • Biographical Sketches
  • Proposal Elements
  • Broader Impacts
  • Intellectual Merit
  • Project Description
  • Project Summary
  • The Elevator Pitch
  • The Commercial Opportunity
  • The Innovation
  • The Company/Team
  • The Technical Discussion/R&D Plan
  • Budget, Subaward Budgets and Budget Justification
  • Indirect Cost Rate Determination
  • Collaborators and Other Affiliations
  • Facilities, Equipment and Other Resources
  • Market Validation Letters

General SBIR Cohort:  EPA, DOC, USDA, DOT, DHS, DoEdu and NASA, SBIR/STTR.  Coaching and advice are provided on an individual and customized basis depending on the targeted federal agency.  The coaching covers the technical and budget proposal, commercialization advice and other requirements.

DOE:  Minnesota firms interested in DOE SBIR/STTR funding are strongly encouraged to apply to the free DOE SBIR/STTR Phase 0 Assistance program.  The Phase 0 Technical Assistance Program is aimed at increasing the number of high-quality SBIR/STTR proposals submitted by first-time applicants to the DOE by eligible small businesses in selected states.  Minnesota is an eligible state.  Dawnbreaker, a third-party provider to the DOE SBIR/STTR Program Office, delivers the assistance to eligible small businesses.