Grants for Your Inventions and Prototypes

Did you know that you can get grant funding for your inventions and your prototypes? Prototyping is one of the most important aspects of the invention world. The design of the final product is based on the prototype. Investors will ask to see the prototype of your invention before product development. A prototype provides the necessary details about how your invention would function, what benefits it offers, its design aesthetics, its marketability, and its scalability. Your prototype will give you an overview of how the customer will interact with your invention.

Most aspiring inventors often seek angel investors or venture capitalists (VCs), to fund them at the prototype development stage. That is, however, unlikely to happen in most cases. Investors investing in a pre-prototype stage are very rare. So, how should aspiring inventors deal with the funding needs for building the prototype? Here are some grants:

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North Dakota companies, higher education agencies, groups, and individuals should apply for this grant to develop technology that will improve agricultural production within the state. Funding is intended to support technological developments that add value to the state’s agriculture industry in food processing or other agricultural equipment. First-time applicants will be given preference. Examples of Eligible Projects include prototype testing, Patenting, prototype evaluation or redesign, or determination of the need to develop a different prototype.

Grants ranging from $1,000 to $5,000 to Illinois, Minnesota, and Wisconsin nonprofit organizations, government agencies, and educational institutions for economic development feasibility studies. Projects must take place in rural areas where the funding source has a business presence. Eligible Projects include market research, most analysis, financial projections, raw material sources, and prototype development.

Grants of up to $99,999 to Alberta Inuit, Métis, and Status or Non-Status entrepreneurs for expanding a small business or funding a start-up. For Métis or Non-Status applicants, additional business loans are also available for up to 60% of the total project costs. The entrepreneur is required to have a minimum of 10% of the project total’s costs.

Alberta nonprofit agricultural groups, industry organizations, municipal governments, active producers, tribes, and post-secondary institutions should apply for this grant for projects to benefit the local agricultural industry. Funding is intended for applied research projects that test innovations for application in the Province’s agricultural industry. Funding is also intended to support feasibility activities, prototype development, proof of concept activities, demonstration activities, and pilot scale-up projects.

Grants to Kansas nonprofits and educational, government, and faith-based institutions in eligible areas for programs that benefit local youth. Funding is intended to support activities within the focus areas of arts, humanities, science, technology, and invention.

Opportunity for children around the world to participate in a contest that fosters creativity and entrepreneurship. Children ranging in ages from PreK to 12th grade may create their own invention, in or outside of school, to solve a problem in their community, school, or home. Inventions may be physical or digital and must be presented in a video.

Grants to Canada IHE faculty members to partner with companies, researcher-owned companies, and early-stage investment groups to develop and transfer technology from colleges and universities to companies throughout the country. Funding is intended to support research and development projects that demonstrate technology transfer potential.

Grants of up to $75,000 to Canadian academic institutions, businesses, and research centers for the formation of partnerships and collaborations with foreign counterparts. Due to travel restrictions related to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, only non-travel related and virtual activities will currently be supported.

Grants to Québec organizations to develop new energy-efficiency solutions. Funding is intended for creative projects that can be used by customers in a range of sectors, including the commercial, residential, industrial, institutional, and transportation markets. Funding is available for both experimental and demonstration projects. The measure must be reproducible and have energy savings potential.

Best of luck with your inventions.

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