Currently, there are more than 31 million entrepreneurs in the U.S. With an increase of dissatisfied employees, many are ditching corporate America and starting their own businesses. A further 24 million Americans want to become self-employed by the end of 2021. However, approximately 28% of aspiring entrepreneurs do not have the cash to invest before taking the plunge into self-employment
So, how do entrepreneurs fund their business?
- 37% of owners use existing savings/cash to start their businesses.
- 10% of small business owners borrow funds from friends or family.
- 9% use unsecured loans.
- 6% use Small Business Administration loans.
If you’re starting a new small business, you are going to need some capital. There are many different ways you can get money for your new venture. Entrepreneur statistics state that one-third of small businesses in the U.S. start with less than $5,000. Nevertheless, the majority of entrepreneurs forget about grant funding.
As the world shifts, more resources have become available to specific locations and industries. Although grants for entrepreneurs are not common, they do exist. For this reason, it is worthwhile to browse through the potential opportunities to see if there are any grants you may qualify for in terms of eligibility. Grant listing directories, such as GrantWatch.com, make it easy to find grants that are currently available. Below, are ten of GrantWatch’s favorite grants for entrepreneurs.
10 Grants for Entrepreneurs
1. Black Business Owners
Black business owners are invited to participate in a business accelerator. Overall, the purpose of the program is to help foster entrepreneurial growth for Black business owners and facilitate their success as sellers. Successful applicants also have the opportunity to receive financial support, business guidance and mentorship, and marketing and promotional support.
Youth and youth teams, ages 13-24, are invited to present solutions to global challenges, as identified by the United Nations. In particular, the applicants must brainstorm and submit original ideas, with finalists writing a one-minute pitch video describing their solution.
3. American Indian
This grant is for nonprofit organizations to promote, preserve, and advance American Indian culture and self-sufficiency. This funding is to support programs that focus on the development of American Indian entrepreneurism. For instance, the facilitation of American Indian education (particularly college, graduate, and post-graduate education), and the preservation and enhancement of American Indian culture.
4. Veterans with Disabilities
Post-9/11 veterans with disabilities can participate in a program to build skills related to business management and entrepreneurship. Participants will receive training and mentoring as well as travel and lodging. This program represents a unique opportunity for those who have sacrificed for the country’s freedom, to take an important step toward realizing their own economic freedom through entrepreneurship.
5. Family Members of Veterans
Family members of eligible military veterans are invited to participate in an intensive entrepreneurship education and training program. The program provides self-employment training and mentoring for individuals seeking to start a business. Family members of post-9/11 veterans, including surviving spouses, adult children, and spouses of the active-duty military currently serving are welcome to apply.
6. Health Sciences Startups
Fellowships are now available to entrepreneurs to build their startups in the fields relating to life sciences or digital health. Applicants must submit an expression of interest form prior to submitting a full proposal. Successful startups are eligible for startup funding, professional development, mentorship, and lab space.
7. Technology Startups
Grants and in-kind support are now accepting applications from technology startups working to address environmental and climate crises. In addition to a cash grant, grantees will receive networking benefits, individualized coaching and mentorship, and special deals from top vendors. Additionally, early-stage climate and sustainability tech startups that focus on sustainability, renewables, and conservation – are encouraged to apply.
8. Recovery after a Natural Disaster
Up to $2,500 in funding is available to eligible entrepreneurs to support recovery after a natural disaster. Furthermore, this funding is intended to help entrepreneurs who have faced business interruptions due to an unforeseen environmental event, such as a wildfire or hurricane, within the past year.
9. Education & Workforce Startups
Education and workforce startups are invited to participate in an accelerator program, connecting startups with investors. If selected, up to $100,000 cash will be invested directly into your current round of raising, in addition to office space, individualized coaching and mentorship, and up to $1M+ in deals and perks from vendors.
10. Towns to Encourage Startups
Grants of $10,000 are now open to U.S. cities and towns to encourage collaboration among community residents. Specifically, the goal of the program is to provide start-up funding for resident-led groups in small cities and towns. Cities and towns with populations between 2,500 – 30,000 are eligible for funding. Communities close to but outside this specified population will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
More funding is available!
Discover more grants currently available for entrepreneurs and startups on GrantWatch.
Learn about the grant process from GrantWatch CEO, Libby Hikind. If you are not already an active MemberPlus+ user with GrantWatch, you will need to purchase a subscription in order to view the full grant details, including the eligibility criteria and RFP application link. >> Click here to learn about the free trial that is available.