Resources for Startups

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Washington, August 13, 2015 | comments
What the Department of Commerce Can Do For Your Startup

Congressman Don Beyer, U.S. Deputy Secretary of Commerce Bruce Andrews, and Deputy Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development Matt S. Erskine, visited 1776 this afternoon for a roundtable and walkthrough at the incubator and venture fund’s recently opened Crystal City location.

Beyer, Deputy Secretary Andrews, and Deputy Assistant Secretary Erskine engaged with small business and tech leaders to highlight federal resources available to startups and the business community; from offering grants, facilitating the patent process and incentivizing collaborative research and development, to inspiring young entrepreneurs at home and abroad, and fostering strong relationships between established corporations and start-ups. This event, a part of Start-Up Day Across America, was also a follow up to the Department's recent Open for Innovation event, held in conjunction with the White House's first Demo Day, during which a number of exciting commitments to inclusive innovation were announced.

The Department’s following programs help create the conditions for innovators and entrepreneurs to thrive by promoting and supporting innovation and entrepreneurship:

1. In 2014, National Institute of Standards and Technology released the first version of the Framework for Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity.  The Framework, created through collaboration between industry and government, consists of standards, guidelines, and practices to promote the protection of critical infrastructure.

2. Minority Business Development Agency serves to provide access to all demographics and drive inclusive innovation. The MBDA ensures minority entrepreneurs have access to capital, contracts, and markets.

3. The United States Patent and Trademark Office provides the patents that protect the great ideas of innovative thinkers.  This year USPTO issued its 9 millionth patent. USPTO has also opened new offices in Detroit, Dallas, Denver and Silicon Valley to provide better access to entrepreneurs.

4. Startup Global empowers early-stage companies to think globally and understand how to export their products.  This includes technical assistance and the basics of exporting goods and services abroad.

5. In their first year, The National Advisory Council on Innovation & Entrepreneurship members drafted a set of recommendations for how DOC and the Administration can expand their work to support regional innovation and entrepreneurship. This includes:
i.      Standardizing labor market data;
ii.      Creating and implementing a Community Playbook for regional innovation;
iii.      Exploring ways to incentivize companies to conduct more collaborative R&D in the U.S.

6. The Regional Innovation Strategies Program is a new initiative designed to advance innovation and capacity-building activities in regions across the country through three different types of grants.  Each regional economy has the opportunity to grow and build its innovation capacity and provide the tools and resources that inventors, entrepreneurs, research universities, and other stakeholders need to commercialize their discoveries. This funds cluster grants for capital funds and science/research parks.

7. Commerce launched the Investing in Manufacturing Communities Partnership (IMCP). The goal is for the Federal Government to support local economic development. Twelve manufacturing communities have already been selected.

To learn more about the ways the Commerce Department can help make it easier and more efficient for entrepreneurs to build and grow their own companies, click here.
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Tags: Economy