Demand for ready-to-go laboratory space for growing wet-lab (biology and chemistry) based companies is extremely high throughout the United States.
Delaware is hoping to address this issue with a new grant program to ensure that existing small companies are able to grow here and that the state can attract new companies by increasing its inventory of “ready-to-go” lab space. This is important because this sector contributes to the valuable research and development (R&D) activity that drives all innovation economies.
Delaware’s recently launched pilot grant program helps science and tech companies with the expenses associated with building out lab space. The initiative is funded by $3 million earmarked from the Delaware Strategic Fund and helps spur private-sector investment by making lab space construction or renovation more affordable.
To qualify, companies need to partner with real estate developers for a specific project. DPP is vetting prospective applicants to ensure they are at the right phase to qualify for a grant, and the state is reviewing qualified applicants as soon as they clear the vetting process.
The state has approved up to $3 million for this fiscal year, and Governor John Carney has announced an intention to set aside additional money for the grant program starting in fiscal year 2022.
Companies should be at the right growth point where they’re going to be creating more jobs and scaling up their research and development along with the size of their overall operations in Delaware. It could be a young company coming out of one of our incubators at the University of Delaware or the Delaware Innovation Space at the DuPont Experimental Station. Or it could be an older but smaller company that has held back and delayed growth over the years because it hasn’t had the space to expand into.
The primary factor is growth point. Each company may only apply for grant funding for up to 20,000, square feet of lab space. Looking at the market, only certain companies fall into that growth stage.
If you need more information or want to review if your company qualifies, contact Noah Olson, DPP’s acting director of Innovation, at email@example.com.
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