Startup Junkie launches program to help new companies get federal grants


FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Local business consulting group, Startup Junkie Foundation is helping new science and technology companies get federal grants that Arkansas has previously missed out on.

In an effort to bring more business to the natural state, Startup Junkie Foundation developed Science Venture Studio (SVS). They will work with new companies by helping them submit proposals to the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs. Programs that help small businesses get federal research, development and funding.

SVS said it’ll provide a unique approach to secure federal funding for these businesses that Arkansas isn’t getting right now. Director Katie Thompson said nationally about 20% of startup companies receive these grants, while in Arkansas only about 13% do.

Thompson said this is due to a lack of support in writing SBIR and STTR proposals.

In order to close that gap Thompson built a team equipped with a grant specialist to help write effective proposals.

Thompson says the goal is to keep growing these companies in Arkansas.

“It’s keeping employees here in Arkansas, they’re wanting to stay here because of these technology startups that are starting here. I think it’s bringing a lot of value to the community and to Arkansas’ economy,” she said.

The Walton Family Foundation granted nearly $500,000 to the Startup Junkie Foundation for this project. It’s in collaboration with Innovate Arkansas and the Northwest Arkansas Council.

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