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Deadline: July 14, 2014

U.S. Small Business Administration: Program for Investment in Microentrepreneurs (PRIME)

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) PRIME opportunity is to provide training and capacity building grant programs to microenterprise development organizations (MDOs). PRIME has three tracks for which SBA will consider granting awards:

  1. Track 1 – seeks applications for funding to provide training and technical assistance programs to disadvantaged entrepreneurs including training specifically designed to implement automated financial accounting, financial reporting, and inventory management systems, etc. and/or promote and develop worker ownership and worker owned cooperatives especially for low and moderate income earners as owners/members.
  2. Track 2 (Capacity Building) – seeks applications for funding to provide training and capacity building services to MDOs, microenterprise development programs, and groups of such organizations to assist them in developing microenterprise training and services, including services geared towards building MDO capacity to provide business training and technical assistance that will improve the ability of small businesses, including members of worker owned cooperatives, to be profitable by means of implementing automated business systems or the promotion and training of worker ownership models as a business ownership and succession strategy or ownership model.
  3. Track 3 (Research and Development) – seeks applications for funding to: (a) develop a PRIME activity reporting system compatible with existing SBA systems or (b) develop other electronic platforms that will assist with increasing small business participation in micro-level borrowing.

Amount:  The SBA anticipates awarding 40 grants under this solicitation. A total of $3.5 million is available for grants ranging from $50,000-$350,000 each. A 50% cost share is required.

Eligibility: (1) A microenterprise development organization or program (or group or Collaborative thereof) such as a non-profit Community Development Financial Institution or similar entity, that has a demonstrated record of delivering microenterprise services to disadvantaged entrepreneurs; or (2) an Intermediary which has experience in delivering technical assistance to disadvantaged entrepreneurs; or (3) a microenterprise development organization or program that is accountable to a local community, working in conjunction with a State or local government or Indian Tribe; or (4) An Indian tribe acting on its own, if it can certify that no private organization or program exists within its jurisdiction.

Link: http://www.sba.gov/content/prime-program (see Grants.gov to download the current solicitation).

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