I am always very cautious when it comes to government grants and government supported competitions. Apart from SBIR/STIR grants (which often literally are used to start companies based on university research), my general view is that startups should NOT overly rely on the government for anything. As a strategy, it is just too risky and unpredictable. Municipalities are tough customers, for example. Often slow paying, bureaucratic, etc. Likewise, state grant funding is sometimes extremely hard to collect or requires that a company spend first and then get reimbursed after the fact. That can be tough for a startup!
Well, let’s leave those cautions behind! EkoStinger (one of CVF’s portfolio companies and one on which I have been a board member of for over 5 years) just won NYSERDA’s 76W competition – first place! One million dollars of non-dilutive funding! Yes, there are milestones to be set. Yes, it will take a while to collect, but holy cow, this is a NICE win!
Congrats to EkoStinger!