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Division of Small Business

EDGE Grants



Encouraging Development, Growth & Expansion

The EDGE Grant program gives qualified small businesses in Delaware an edge by offering access to significant capital like never before. 

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The application submission period for the current round of EDGE grants has ended.

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CONGRATULATIONS TO THE 1ST ROUND OF EDGE AWARDEES!

Grant Overview

The Division of Small Business awards EDGE Grants through a competitive selection process. STEM-based companies can receive up to $100,000 for eligible expenses. Entrepreneur Class (non-STEM) businesses can get up to $50,000. The funds are provided as a $3 (state) to $1 (business) match. And the Division can provide up to 10 grants per application round (5 STEM/5 Entrepreneur).

 

 

Who Is Eligible*

Qualified applications must:

  • Have been in operation less than 5 years
  • Employ 10 people or fewer
  • Be majority located in Delaware
  • Have not received a previous Strat Fund grant
Award Criteria*

Applications will be judged by a panel of experts on:

  • Business need case
  • Competitive advantage gained
  • Business viability and likelihood of permanence
  • MWVBE status of business owner
  • Business location (DDD and/or Opportunity Zone)
  • Job creation/revenue growth
Eligible Expenses

Grant funding must be used to expand a business’s viability and sustainability, specifically:

  • Market analysis assistance
  • Advertising assistance
  • Building infrastructure/cosmetic enhancements
  • Essential equipment
  • Web site design
  • Rent assistance for lab space
*Other conditions and qualifications may apply

 

Looking for help?

Tips for a successful application

 

Contact one of the Division’s Regional Business Managers for assistance with your application.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

 

  • Can a company apply if it is not based in Delaware?
    • A non-Delaware company may apply on the condition that it would relocate at least 51% of its business (employees and real property) to Delaware if awarded a grant. That relocation would need to take place before any funds would be disbursed.
  • What grants, if previously received, disqualify a company from receiving an EDGE Grant?
    • A company is not eligible for an EDGE Grant if it has received any money through the Delaware Strategic Fund. This includes money from DTIP (SBIR/STTR). In very rare circumstances, a business may be eligible for an EDGE Grant if the project involved is significantly different from the one that received previous funds. Contact a Regional Business Manager to talk about your specific situation.
  • What level of confidentiality is provided to applications?
    • In accordance with state Freedom of Information Act policy, applicants may request confidentiality on items whose disclosure they feel would likely cause them competitive harm or endanger a trade secret.
  • Can a 501(c)(3) apply?
    • The grants are primarily intended to assist people building private, for-profit companies. That said, there may be a special circumstance in which a 501(c)(3) would be eligible. Contact one of the Division’s Regional Business Managers to discuss your organization’s eligibility before applying.
  • Can I apply for a grant if I have not yet formed my business?
    • Yes, you would apply as a sole proprietorship.
  • What can count as part of the grantee’s match?
    • Cash, equipment or any non-state/local-government grants may be included as part of the match provided they are sufficiently tied to the project for which the company is seeking EDGE funding.
  • Are there any formatting guidelines for the proposal?
    • Refer to the Tips Sheet for font type and page limit, etc.
  • For the purpose of eligibility, how are part-time employees counted toward the limit of 10 employees?
    • Part-time employees count as ½ employees for the purposes of the limit. Full-time employees count as 1. Any employee working fewer than 10 hours per week or fewer than four months per year does not count toward the employee limit.
  • What is the timeline for the approval process?
    • Finalist are announced approximately six to eight weeks after an application round closes with the grantees chosen in the following weeks.

 





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