NJII, Institute for Life Science Entrepreneurship win $50K SBA competition awards

Two New Jersey organizations were among the winners of the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Growth Accelerator Fund Competition and Small Business Innovation Research Catalyst competition, the SBA announced Tuesday.

The New Jersey Innovation Institute, based in Newark, and the Institute for Life Science Entrepreneurship, based in Union, each won $50,000 as part of the Growth Accelerator Fund Competition program track. That element of the contest includes entries from accelerators and incubators that target assistance to STEM and research & development entrepreneurs from underrepresented groups, including women, people of color, rural and veteran entrepreneurs, the SBA said.

“I am proud to announce the winners of the 2021 Growth Accelerator Fund Competition and SBIR Catalyst prize competition,” SBA Administrator Isabella Casillas Guzman said in a prepared statement. “This year’s cohort of winners emphasizes our commitment to equity. Our awardees have innovative plans to support underserved entrepreneurs, including women, people of color and individuals from underrepresented geographic areas.”

Some $5.4 million in awards was available through the competitions. The 84 winners came from 48 states, plus Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and the District of Columbia.

“It is quite exciting to have two winners of this highly selective competition here in New Jersey,” New Jersey District Director Al Titone said in a statement. “With the wide range of startups and innovators who are working on cutting-edge STEM/R&D ideas here in the Garden State, these awards will help provide additional access for these small businesses to technical support and capital.”

For the complete list of winners, click here.