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SBA announces webinars for its Growth Accelerator Fund Competition

The virtual meetings for qualified applicants will take place Feb. 6-9.

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The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) recently unveiled its schedule of online workshops for this month that are part of its 7th Growth Accelerator Fund Competition (GAFC).

Offering $13 million in prizes in 2023 and 2024, the initiative wants to expand growth accelerators and create innovative partnerships with inclusive approaches to support entrepreneurs in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) and research and development (R&D).

Bailey DeVries, associate administrator of Investment and Innovation, stated:

SBA’s impactful Growth Accelerator Fund Competition provides prizes to entrepreneurial support organizations (ESOs) that serve as catalysts for our thriving, inclusive national innovation ecosystem.

What are in the webinars?

Entrepreneurs interested in applying for the Growth Accelerator Competition can join any of the informative online webinars, which will provide information about the competition and facilitate connections between Entrepreneur Support Organizations (ESOs) and potential partners working on similar issues across the country.

The programming is as follows:

  • Feb. 6: National security and global competitiveness, including but not limited to — national security and defense, international trade and public health
  • Feb. 7: Domestic manufacturing and production, including but not limited to — agricultural technology, food security and nutrition, as well as supply chain resilience and critical and resilient infrastructure
  • Feb. 8: Climate and renewable energy, including but not limited to — climate and environment, energy and sustainability
  • Feb. 9: Underrepresented people, places and topics

Stage One Catalyze submissions are being accepted now through Feb. 24. Multiplier bonus awards will be available to new and rural-focused ecosystem partners.

“These awards reflect a priority across the Biden-Harris Administration to advance equity by incentivizing greater collaboration and partnership among stakeholders and supporting the development of inclusive growth accelerators that will empower underserved entrepreneurs. I encourage ecosystem builders and entrepreneurial support organizations with great ideas to accelerate growth and drive for innovation to apply as soon as possible,” added DeVries.

Interested applicants can RSVP for a webinar by clicking here.

“Since 2014, SBA has made nearly 400 awards to Innovation Growth Accelerators in 52 states and territories, establishing a solid network of innovation support for startups and small businesses across the country. New this year, the competition places greater emphasis on fostering connections across innovation ecosystem stakeholders,” stressed the SBA. 

ESOs motivated to strengthen and increase equitable access to resources for underserved communities and industries can click here.

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