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Matching cash available to commercialize products in SC

Technology
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A matching funds program to move South Carolina companies into commercialization of products has launched in the Palmetto State.

The Small Business Technology Transfer Grants are administered through the S.C. Commerce Department’s Office of Innovation along with the S.C. Jobs-Economic Development Authority and 3Phase, a S.C Commerce initiative formed in 2018  to help small businesses qualify for federal money to accelerate growth to a commercialization stage.

Commerce said the granting program is structured with two initial rounds of funding to help companies where they exist and a third phase toward commercialization. Phase I is for concept development, and Phase II is for prototype development, Commerce said in a news release.

S.C. Commerce said a Phase II project could also receive more matching money through a program to help accelerate growth toward commercialization.

“The South Carolina SBIR/STTR Phase IIB Matching Fund represents the next milestone in S.C. Commerce’s ongoing mission to promote the state’s innovation economy,” Commerce Secretary Harry M. Lightsey said in a statement. “The creation of this matching fund provides another resource for companies and another opportunity to recruit new business and create high-paying jobs within our borders.”

Some companies also can qualify for “supplemental funding” through federal agencies, S.C. Commerce said, if they have received private investment or other capital.

“Federal grant funding, partnered with matching private equity capital provides necessary investment to assist these vetted private, early stage start-up companies in South Carolina,” JEDA Executive Director Harry Huntley said in a statement. “This program will help spur additional private equity and capital funding for South Carolina’s new and innovative companies.”

The agency said JEDA will match up to $100,000 for Phase II awards for high-tech, small businesses located in South Carolina or for companies that relocate to the state.

3Phase, which is administering the funds and making recommendations to JEDA, is holding a virtual information session on Sept. 16 and 20. For more information, contact 3Phase at info@3phasesc.com.

Reach Andy Owens at 843-849-3142.

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