10 Must See Small Business Startup Grants 2015

By John Whiting, - In Money

Picture of a man sitting on boxes looking at his laptop in a very nice modern looking office looking for small business startup grants 2015

Photo Credit: stockphotosecrets

Small business startup grants 2015 are always important to keep an eye on. They can help sustain your business until your cashflow becomes more reliable and positive. They can also help to significantly grow your business.

Below, I’ve listed some great startup funding opportunities that are available in 2015. Feel free to add your thoughts in the comments below. Or even add in some suggestions that aren’t included in this blog.

RSA Conference Innovation Sandbox Contest

While there is no cash prize for winning the contest, it helps elevate the finalists profile in the security industry as well as among venture capitalists, who attend the show. As a result of participating, many of the companies have received funding almost right away. A couple of examples:

  • Remotium raised $1 million within 30 days of participating.

The half-day event not only includes the startup competition but also features a panel on innovative funding sources for startups.

Lighter Capital

Lighter Capital provides small tech businesses with loans from $50k to $1 million – but it’s a unique model as monthly payments are based on the revenue the startup generates during a given month. (So, if there’s no revenue, there’s no payment.)

Invest Maryland Challenge 

This competition does require you to establish your company in Maryland, but the $100,000 investment isn’t too shabby. (Small note: the competition is in December, and the site seems to not have been updated since the Dec 2014 competition. I’m guessing that there will be another one next year though, given the investment.).

Govs Biz Plan Contest

This competition also has a residency requirement. But, if you win the grand prize, you’ll get $25,000. Participants on the competition also get advice throughout the entire competition.


They are a brand new financing platform for product/hardware companies. They’re just ramping up
but it can be seen as a significant funding source for growing companies

Miller Lite Tap the Future

Tap The Future is a competition that allows entrepreneurs to pitch for a chance to earn more than $200K in funding cash. As well as this, they offer business seminars, live pitch opportunities, access to top entrepreneurs like Daymond John and much more. Definitely a great opportunity.


Square recently launched a new small business financing program, Square Capital, intended to make it easier for small businesses to get access to money. There are some great stories about younger startups that were turned away from the banks because of their age or lack of credit history — like the story featured here.

Rice Business Plan Competition

The Rice Business Plan Competition is the world’s richest and largest student startup competition with over $1.5+ million in prizes.


There is a lot of companies like Lendio that are filling the gaps left by banks, especially for startups. They make getting a small business loan a fast and simple process. Lendio has multiple lenders for you, so you don’t have to go bank to bank. You just fill out one simple application, and they’ll work with you to get you the right loan for your business

Startup Chile

It’s an accelerator program based in Santiago Chile that provides approximately $40K in grant funding to technology-based companies anywhere in the world who are willing to spend 6 months in Chile working on their startups. It’s definitely a valuable opportunity for companies that are able to take advantage of the grant. It’s not a requirement that the companies be related to Chile or to South American markets.  

Muhammad At-Tauhidi went through this accelerator program in 2014 for his company On Month Spanish and had a positive experience.

“The thing that made Startup Chile most valuable wasn’t even the funding – but the network. Over the last few years, Startup Chile has slowly amassed one of the richest and most diverse networks of startup and technology talent that exists outside of Silicon Valley. I can go to almost any major city – New York, Berlin, Mumbai – and meet up with Startup Chile alumni. Although the formal program only lasts for six months, I feel like it gave me a lifetime’s worth of relationships.”

What are some startup funding opportunities you have seen that businesses can get involved with in 2015?


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