More grant funding available for women- and minority-owned businesses looking to enter off-shore wind sector

Ocean Wind Pro-NJ Grant Trust making money available to small businesses looking to join industry in N.J.

Toy windmills cut from five major world currency banknotes over blue sky

The Ocean Wind Pro-NJ Grantor Trust, an independent fund established by Ocean Wind 1, next week will open its next grant funding round for small, women-owned and minority-owned businesses in New Jersey looking for support to enter the offshore wind industry.

The Trust, which was established by Ocean Wind 1 in 2019 with a pledge of $15 million over a 7-year period, aims to ensure that the offshore wind industry in New Jersey is developed in a sustainable and inclusive way while also providing support for coastal resiliency projects in Atlantic, Cape May and Ocean counties.

In its initial round of funding, the Trust provided grants totaling nearly $450,000 to six small, women-owned and minority-owned businesses. In 2022, the Trust awarded $3.9 million to seven municipalities in support of coastal infrastructure and resiliency projects.

To help improve access to funds, the Trustees determined the best way for that to occur is for interested businesses to submit EOIs prior to submitting formal applications. Interested businesses looking to participate are invited to submit Expressions of Interest for consideration, starting on June 5. (Click here for more information)

Once the EOIs are reviewed by the Trustees and members of the Advisory Committee, qualified applicants will be invited to submit formal proposals.

The initial window to submit EOIs is set for five weeks and will be accepted through 3 p.m. on July 10, and may be extended depending on the number of EOIs received.

The following list represents some, but not all the fields the Trust seeks to support:

• Onshore and offshore light logistics and services

• Marine vessel supply and maintenance

• Aviation supply and maintenance

• Buildings – construction and repair

• Professional services (communications, environmental/permitting, engineering, etc.)

• Turbine blade inspection and service

• Fuel service and supply

• Network/wireless communications supply, service, and repair

• Workforce training, trade/safety, etc.

• Cleaning and janitorial

• Food service and catering

• Onshore and offshore surveys

• Project and risk management

• Health and safety equipment and clothing

• Marine clothing/equipment supply

Beverly McCall, chairperson of the Pro-NJ Grantor Trust, said the group aims to have impact.

“As the offshore wind industry continues to grow in New Jersey and the region, the Trust remains committed to providing the capital and opportunity to ensure the offshore wind industry is developed in a sustainable and inclusive way for small, women-owned and minority-owned New Jersey businesses,” she said.