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Biz-M-Power Grant Program

 

 

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GRANT PROGRAM OVERVIEW

The Biz-M-Power crowdfunding matching grant program offers small businesses in Massachusetts financial assistance with their acquisition, expansion, improvement or lease of a facility, purchase or lease of equipment, or with meeting other capital needs for the business. Eligible applicants will be empowered to advance their business with an innovative approach to obtaining capital. Through crowdfunding campaigns, these businesses connect with their local residents and stakeholders to advance projects that support economic success and transformation for their business and in their communities. This program is funded by the Commonwealth’s Operating Budget for Fiscal Year 2021. 

Preference shall be given to small businesses owned by low- to moderate-income individuals (LMI), women, minorities, immigrants, non-native English speakers, U.S. military veterans, disabled individuals, members of the LGBTQ+ community, and businesses operating in Massachusetts Gateway Cities.

Program Overview Translation

Soon available in the following languages (Application remains in English)

Arabic Haitian Creole
Cambodian Korean
Chinese Portuguese (Brazilian)
French Spanish
Gujarati Vietnamese

FUNDING

GRANT USE:

  • Acquire, expand, improve or lease a facility; or 
  • Purchase or lease equipment; or  
  • Meet other capital needs of a business 
  • Funds CANNOT be used for ongoing business operations such as payroll, benefits, buying of inventory, and general working capital. 

TOTAL FUNDS AVAILABLE:  Commonwealth’s Operating Budget for Fiscal Year 2021 appropriated $7,500,000 for this program.

AWARDS:  Businesses can receive minimum of $2,500 and a maximum of $20,000 in matching grants from MGCC. Combined with their crowdfunding dollars, they can earn $40,000+!

  • SBTA Sponsors, if applicable – When businesses apply with an SBTA Sponsor, SBTA Sponsor will receive $250 from matching grant unless SBTA Sponsor chooses to waive fee.
  • Patronicity Fee Set at 5% of the crowdfunding funds raised. Additionally, there is a 2.6% plus $0.30/transaction credit card fee collected by Stripe, the payment processor used by Patronicity. Donors have the option to cover all fees at checkout, thus reducing overall fees incurred to the Project.

CROWDFUNDING:  Dependent upon application approval, businesses will launch a crowdfunding campaign to reach a financial goal. Goal must be met to receive one-to-one matching grant award.

  • If businesses are unable to meet crowdfunding goal, matching grant funds will not be awarded
    • E.G., If you commit to fundraising $10,000 on your application by the [deadline], but are only able to raise $7,000 by the [deadline], MGCC will not offer the one-to-one matching 
    • E.G., If you commit to fundraising $10,000 on your application by the [deadline] and can raise $10,000 by the [deadline], MGCC will provide the one-to-one matching grant award for $10,000 - bringing the total amount received by the small business to $20,000.  

NOTE: Businesses with retail stores or that offer face-to-face services may have a better chance with successfully crowdfunded campaigns. Examples include: 

  • Restaurants
  • Bars
  • Coffee Shops/Cafes/Bakeries
  • Salons/Day Spas
  • Retail Shops (especially convenience stores, hardware stores, etc.) 

This is not an exhaustive list. Eligible businesses not on this list are still welcome to apply. 

TIMELINE

PROGRAM OPENS

June 15, 2021

This will be a rolling application. Existing applications will be reviewed by MGCC on a monthly basis. Applicants can expect to hear back within six weeks of completed submission of their grant application, including all necessary supplementary documents and information.

NEXT REVIEW DEADLINE

December 6, 2021

 

Apply now through 12/6 and the next round of application reviews will begin 12/7.

PROGRAM CLOSES

June 30, 2022 or when funds are exhausted, whichever comes sooner.

APPLICANT ELIGIBILITY   

Biz-M-Power is open to businesses who meet the following requirements. Must be an entrepreneur or small business that:  

  • Is operating within Massachusetts with a public-facing, brick-and-mortar (physical) location, or storefront
  • Is employing 1-20 full-time equivalent (FTE) employees, including 1 or more of whom owns the business (1099’s included)
  • Is the business owners’ primary source of income  
  • Has an annual revenue not exceeding $2,500,000  
  • Has been legally established/in the early-stages of business operations for at least 3 months 
  • Is NOT a home-based business
  • Is NOT owned by someone employed by the sponsoring SBTA, if applicable
  • Is NOT a nonprofit, not-for-profit, or charitable organization 
  • Is NOT a franchise with more than 2 locations, including those individually owned-and-operated (Franchises with up to 2 locations will be considered, but MGCC reserves the right to limit grant funding to one location)  
  • Is NOT a real estate rental/sales business 
  • Is NOT a lobbyist
  • Is NOT a cannabis-related business 

Owned by: 

  • An individual of 18 years or older at the time of application  
  • A United States citizen or permanent resident

NOTE: If a person owns multiple businesses and submits an application for each business, MGCC reserves the right to limit grant to one business per owner.

Compliance with federal funds, laws and regulations: Applicants must comply with all applicable laws.

HOW THE PROGRAM WORKS

Before starting: Need help applying?

If you would like to receive technical assistance with your application, we would be happy to connect you with a Small Business Technical Assistance (SBTA) Provider! Click this link to submit a SBTA Introduction Request: CLICK HERE

  • APPLICATION PROCESS

    STEP 1: Apply

    The application must be filled out and submitted along with attachments as stated in “Required Documentation” electronically through MGCC’s online application portal, Submittable. Hard copies or electronic copies submitted in any other way, such as mailed in or emailed, will not be considered. Additionally, only complete, accurate and legible applications will be considered. 

     

    STEP 2: Application Review

    • Rolling application process: Applications will be reviewed by MGCC a monthly basis. Applicants can expect to hear back within six weeks of the completed submission of their grant application, including all necessary supplementary documents and information.
    • MGCC and Patronicity Review Teams will evaluate applications based on the eligibility criteria and preference prioritization.
    • MGCC or Patronicity may contact applicants for additional information on incomplete applications.
    • MGCC communicates the approval/rejection to applicants via Submittable

     

    STEP 3: Launching Your Crowdfunding Campaign

    Approved applicants will work closely with a crowdfunding coach provided by Patronicity to prepare the public-facing crowdfunding page, develop reward incentives, and come up with a strategy for a 30-60 day campaign. Campaigns must launch within 30 days of MGCC approval. Patronicity will provide technical assistance throughout the raise period.

     

    STEP 4: Receive Your Funding

    Crowdfunding campaigns that reach their goals will receive a matching grant on funds raised during your crowdfunding. If the business reached beyond their goal, MGCC will match grant on the set goal amount. If crowdfunding campaigns fall short of their goal, businesses will still receive the funds raised, just without the matching funds.

  • REQUIRED DOCUMENTATION

    Please be prepared to provide the following documentation when completing the application. Applications are unable to be submitted without this information.

    • A complete copy (all schedules) of your filed 2019 (or 2020 if available) Federal Business Tax Return as submitted to the IRS. If you file Schedule C income, please upload that document in place of a Business Tax Return 
    • A complete copy (all schedules) of your filed 2019 or 2020 Federal Personal Tax Returns as submitted to the IRS for each business owner with 20% or greater ownership 
    • Completed and signed IRS W-9 Form for your business 
    • Copy of business lease statement, tenant at will agreement, or mortgage statement for verification of brick-and-mortar, public-facing physical business location 
    • A copy of the business owner's valid photo identification (ID). This ID must match the business owner who is an authorized signer that signs this application. Please submit a photocopy of the front and back of the ID. Examples include (submit one): State-issued driver's license/ID card, U.S. Passport book or card, other valid, state or federal issued photo ID 
    • If your business is a LLC, Partnership or Corporation: A copy of your Certificate of Good Standing from the Massachusetts Secretary of State’s office. If you need to request a Certificate of Good Standing, click here: https://corp.sec.state.ma.us/CorpWeb/Certificates/CertificateOrderForm.aspx. Note: If you do not have a Certificate of Good Standing prior to submission of your application, it will be required prior to funding. Note: All entities organized in other states that operate in Massachusetts must be registered and in good standing in Massachusetts. Note: A Certificate of Good Standing from the Massachusetts Department of Revenue is not required and will not be accepted as a substitute of the Massachusetts Secretary of State’s Certificate of Good Standing. 
    • If your business is a Sole Proprietorship: A copy of your Business Certificate (DBA) from your city/town 

QUESTIONS, PLEASE CONTACT: Theresa Ng, Community Project Manager

bizmpower@massgcc.com or (617) 523-6262 ext. 266  

 

Check out the live project campaigns happening now on Patronicity!

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)