The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) announced that Launch Minnesota has awarded nearly $440,000 in matching grants to 17 local startups who were competitively awarded over $8 million in federal Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer funding (SBIR/STTR). Of the 17 grantees, 10 are BIPOC or woman-owned businesses and/or are located in Greater Minnesota.
“We believe in the importance of fostering these technologies, which is why MN-DEED financially supports the Minnesota SBIR/STTR Accelerator and startups through our innovation grants,” said Kevin McKinnon, DEED Deputy Commissioner for Economic Development.
The startups in this round of funding received support from the Minnesota SBIR/STTR Accelerator™, which is Minnesota’s designated resource for SBIR/STTR assistance. The Minnesota SBIR/STTR Accelerator delivers free, hands-on expertise and technical assistance to startups and small businesses to access this funding. The Accelerator provides this assistance through funding provided by the US Small Business Administration, MN-DEED and other private and academic partnerships.
“These businesses underwent a very competitive and rigorous technical and commercialization evaluation on the national level to be awarded funding,” said Pat Dillon, Founder and Director, Minnesota SBIR/STTR Accelerator, who has been advising firms for 30 years to help startups and small business transform their high impact technologies into marketable products and services. Through a competitive awards-based program, SBIR and STTR enable small businesses to explore their technological potential and provide the incentive to profit from its commercialization.
“Over the years, we have seen several University of Minnesota startups benefit from DEED’s support to obtain this critical non-dilutive funding, and it helps validate the work we do in our Venture Center to help University companies,” added Rick Huebsch Executive Director, Technology Commercialization at the University of Minnesota, a statewide partner of Launch Minnesota. “We are happy to partner with the Minnesota SBIR/STTR Accelerator and Launch Minnesota to ensure all Minnesota-based startup companies do well in this competitive federal grant process.”
“Launch Minnesota continues to cultivate partnerships with organizations like the MN SBIR/STTR Accelerator and the University of Minnesota to help grow our innovation ecosystem, leverage federal grants, and accelerate the launch of new technologies.” added Neela Mollgaard, Executive Director of Launch Minnesota, “access to capital, connectivity and talent are critical in accelerating businesses.”
SBIR/STTR award recipients include:
Radwave Technologies (Saint Paul): Developing an electromagnetic navigation system that provides accurate object tracking for advanced surgical procedures.
LifEngine Animal Health Laboratories (Rochester): Using gene-editing technology to reprogram living cells for use as a cancer therapy in animals.
Inkit (Minneapolis): Developing a streamlined automated process to automatically generate paperless PDF documents at scale.
Advisory Aerospace OSC (Minnetonka): Developing a plug-and-play production scheduling optimizer for aerospace manufacturers using their current data streams.
Fybraworks Foods (Saint Paul): Developing a fermentation-based meat alternative that more closely mimics the taste and texture of animal meal through recombinant protein technologies.
Ability Interactive (Eagan): Developing a novel computerized assessment tool to improve outcome measures in mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer’s clinical trials.
SuraMedical (Minneapolis): Development of an innovative Wound Alert treatment monitoring system enabling real-time monitoring.
Darcy Solutions (Excelsior): Developing a novel method of storing and recovering heat energy in the shallow subsurface using an innovative geothermal heat pump.
GogyUp (Minneapolis): Developing assistive reading technology to increase patients’ ability to understand, manage, and communicate information about chronic disease.
MineraLogic (Duluth): Researching and developing a novel predictive modeling tool and method for determining site-specific data to help companies optimize mining projects for increased CO2 sequestration.
TFWireless (Minneapolis): Developing a novel wireless communications technology based on physical (PHY) layer rateless codes.
Xanthos Health (Saint Paul): Develop and pilot a novel electronic-health record (EHR)-enabled standards-based mobile health information technology.
COHI Group (Arden Hills): Researching and developing a deep learning algorithm and otoscope that parents can use at home to diagnoses ear infections in children.
Conway Medical (Rochester): Developing a novel large-bore thrombectomy system appropriate for transradial access.
AdvancedCPR Solutions LLC (Edina): Researching and developing novel resuscitation technologies.
CD3 (Saint Paul): Developing a biosensor for use in aquaculture to detect customers’ target aquatic pathogens.
Rowbot Systems (Minneapolis): Developing a novel artificial intelligence technology that enables corn farmers to optimize nitrogen fertilizer applications based on field characteristics, rainfall, and growing conditions.
Visit LaunchMinnesota.org to learn more, or locate the full list of Launch Minnesota Innovation Grants. The funds for this fiscal year have now been fully awarded, but an additional $1.5M in funding for Innovation Grants will be available during the next fiscal year starting in July 2022.