SBA’s National SBIR Road Tour Is Coming to Oklahoma City Engaging Small Businesses Working on High-Tech, High-Impact Ideas
The U.S. Small Business Administration’s National Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Road Tour is coming to Oklahoma City on May 20 as part of a 16-stop tour to connect entrepreneurs working on advanced technology to the country’s largest source of early stage funding – the Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer programs. Also known as America’s Seed Fund, the SBIR/STTR programs focus on next generation research and development and is led by the SBA with 11 participating federal agencies.
“Every year, we meet entrepreneurs from around the country looking to turn their big idea into another great American innovation story. We are committed to supporting America’s small-businesses owners wherever they are,” SBA Administrator Linda McMahon said. “This tour reflects our continued commitment to ensuring that these innovators are aware of SBA’s resources to help them reach that goal.”
The SBIR Road Tour plays an important role in increasing engagement with entrepreneurial ecosystems across the country and building out greater networks to support the creation of small businesses focusing on high-impact research.
Oklahoma companies have already benefited from the SBIR/STTR program. The Oklahoma City-based company, Ocupath, was recently awarded a $125,000 Phase I SBIR contract from the Navy to develop online training programs with virtual reality features. Ocupath founder and CEO Greg Hallman, with assistance from local support organization Oklahoma Catalyst Programs, secured funding by leveraging his experience in education, VR expertise and strategic partnerships.
"Our experience with SBIR has been unequivocally and profoundly instrumental in our company's growth. Our project with the U.S. Navy has been stimulating, challenging, relevant and fun. The members of the SBIR organization have been nothing short of professional and supportive,” said Hallman. Ocupath is currently competing for a Phase II Award that would allow the company to continue developing new technology for the Navy for the next two years.
The Oklahoma City stop will be hosted by the Oklahoma Catalyst Programs, an office of the Tom Love Innovation Hub, an organization involved in supporting entrepreneurs in next generation R&D. Program managers from the participating federal agencies will conduct one-on-one meetings with small businesses, take part in targeted panels, discuss technology areas, and share insights into how the agencies make funding decisions.
The SBIR/STTR programs provide over $3 billion in early-stage funding to small businesses each year in a wide variety of technology areas such as unmanned systems, advanced materials, health, cybersecurity and defense. The SBIR/STTR programs execute over 5,000 new awards annually, which allow innovators to advance new technologies and have contributed to the creation of thousands of jobs.
Small technology firms, innovators, scientists or researchers seeking more information on the SBIR Road Tour, including a schedule of stops and participating agencies, should visit: www.sbirroadtour.com.
For more information about SBIR/STTR programs, please visit www.sbir.gov.
The national SBIR Road Tour news release can be found here: www.sbirroadtour.com/news.php