SBIR and the Government Shutdown

  Tracking Relationship of SBIR Awards and VC Funding

  DoD SBIR/STTR - Funding Beyond Shields and Swords

  It's all About the Value Proposition

  Conduct a Patent Search and Keep Quiet

  BATON Referral Network


govtshutdownSBIR and the Government Shutdown


The federal government shutdown is having affects on various agencies. Rick Shindell has done a terrific job of outlining how this is affecting specific agencies. Rick has been a longtime member of the SBIR community and has helped to keep us "in the know" on timely issues for 20+ years. We have promoted Rick's free topic search tools at over this period. He has informed the community that the URL for this service is now at and that the site is being updated for functionality. Thanks, Rick, for the continued updates and support to the program.

Copyright Rick Shindell - SBIR Insider Newsletter - January 2019

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vcfundingTracking Relationship of SBIR Awards and VC Funding

SSTI (State Science and Technology Institute) used data from the NVCA and Pitchbook to compare, by state, the number of VC deals done with the number of SBIR awards.   Below is a table of the top 11 states. In the majority of states, including NC, there is a consistent relationship between the two funding sources. Significant outliers included Virginia and Maryland whose number of SBIR awards is significantly greater than that of VC deals. NC is ranked #11 for both SBIR and VC.


swordsDoD SBIR/STTR - Funding Beyond Shields and Swords

When deciding to test the SBIR/STTR waters, many innovators find themselves focusing on one or two of the 11 agencies that participate in the SBIR program. This happens because, generally, an agency may have an obvious sweet spot for solicitation topics based on its core mission. For instance, Health and Human Services (HHS/NIH) is most likely to be focused on funding vaccines, medical devices, and other innovations to promote health of humans. Similarly, the climate-focused NOAA is more likely to be interested in instrumentation to analyze weather and air quality. Occasionally, however, there may be overlap between agencies' missions, such as some type of newly discovered flora with the potential of being fuel source. In this case, the innovation may find funding in either Department of Energy (DoE) or Department of Agriculture (USDA). Ah, but as the letters fall on this page, I can hear someone saying, "But the National Science Foundation also has interest in these topics."

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ncreviewUpcoming Events

Catalyst for SBIR/STTR
Thursday, February 21, 2019 8:00AM to 12:00PM
Location: UNC Charlotte

SBIR Program Overview Webinar
Thursday, March 7, 2:00PM to 3:00PM

NSF SBIR/STTR Overview featuring NSF Program Manager Dr. Nair
Thu, Mar 28, 2019 10:30 AM - 11:30 AM EDT


It's all About the Value Proposition

Think about successful businesses. Whether a small or large business, traditionally funded or via angel or venture capital, all of these have business fundamentals that remain constant, regardless of funding source. It is safe to say that the same business fundamentals that make traditional businesses successful make growth ventures good investment opportunities.

It's all about the value proposition. F irst, and perhaps most importantly, is that successful businesses have identified a compelling unmet need(s) in the marketplace. They know who their customer is, what problem they face, how their solution provides a quantifiable benefit and how they are a step above the leading competitors. This is the value proposition, the foundation upon which the business is built.  
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Upcoming Events

Becoming an Investor Ready Entrepreneur 
Wednesday, April 3, 8:30 AM to 4:00 PM
Location: Hickory, NC
Registration and agenda: Coming soon!

Conduct a Patent Search and Keep Quiet

You have an idea for an invention, but you really don't know what to do next.

If you want to pursue a patent, there are a number of steps to take. The first two things we can suggest are to conduct a search and don't tell anyone about your idea.

Do a search (i.e., ask)

Conducting a search on your idea is the best, first step to seeing where you stand. Many times, a search will reveal that someone has already thought of your idea. Try Google and, if you don't find anything, try some keywords at the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) website ( ). These cost nothing but your time and can save you a lot of cash and grief.

You can also try a search within the patent classification system. Patents are organized into groups based on their subject matter. You can find listings of the classes at the USPTO website here: . Once you identify the classification(s) relating to your invention, you can conduct a search within the classification(s).  

If you find that someone has patented or is using your idea, don't despair. Many times, people come up with a concept, but don't have the passion and/or commitment to see it through to a product. Perhaps you can connect to this person and propose to license and commercialize the invention. We will discuss this in later installments of this series.

BATONBATON Referral Network

The BATON Referral Network is a community of life science professionals committed to the growth of North Carolina-based companies.

These service providers and CEO candidates represent a vast array of business and technical expertise, and were pre-qualified by the NC Biotechnology Center. Service providers pledge to contribute services or provide preferential pricing for referrals coming through the BATON network database.

There is no cost to qualified Service Providers to participate in the BATON program.  However, participating Service Providers are expected to offer some or all of their services for referrals coming through the BATON network database under one or more of the following terms: pro bono, discounted, at cost, deferred, fixed cost, service for equity.


The North Carolina Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC) educates business associates on how to obtain contracts by providing comprehensive assistance in selling products and services to local, state and federal government agencies.
The SBTDC's International Business Development Specialists assists small and mid-sized businesses with export planning and exporting.

The Team

The Technology Commercialization Services team provides one-on-one business counseling and advice 
to: small business owners, university researchers, and entrepreneurs looking to advance their innovations to the marketplace.

Director, Technology Development 
and Commercialization 
SBIR/STTR Specialist & Newsletter Editor 
Technology Commercialization Counselor
Eastern NC
Technology Commercialization Counselor
North Central NC
Technology Commercialization Counselor
Western NC

Technology Commercialization Program

5 West Hargett St., Suite 600 Raleigh, NC 27601
[email protected]