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Colorado Small Business Grants

When you start a new business, one of the most important factors that may affect operations is availability of finance. You may have prepared a detailed financial and budget plan but sometimes things don’t work exactly according to the plan. This is where Colorado small business grants can be quite helpful. These grants have been created specifically to promote entrepreneurship and they provide a secure form of funding. Grants, apart from investment capital and loans, are a key form of funding for small businesses. If you plan on doing business in Colorado then this guide can provide you with valuable information pertaining to various funding options available in the state including grants and financial assistance programs.

Doing Business in Colorado

When you have put a plan in place to launch your idea, product, or service, there are several aspects to consider that can be related to business formation and operations. Doing business in Colorado according to state laws and within your desired budget can be quite a tough proposition. This is where Colorado small business incentives can provide the necessary cushion. These incentive plans or programs administered by different government bodies, are targeted mostly at small businesses. Some of the other factors to consider when conducting business in the state include choosing a desirable location e.g., Denver and Fort Collins have been described by Forbes as the most conducive locations for small businesses in the state. Apart from this, you also need to check the various options for funding or financing available in the state like loans, grants, and private investors.

Why do businesses prefer doing business in Colorado?

If you plan on doing business in Colorado then you will be happy to know that the state provides strong infrastructural support for small business and large enterprises. If you are forming a startup in this state then you can take advantage of the various Colorado small business grants that strengthen the initial financial requirements of starting and operating your business. Let us take a look at some of the advantages of conducting business in this state.

  • Strong and Committed workforce – The state of Colorado has one of the best workforces in the country. The current talent pool has just the right motivation, skills, and knowledge that gears them to provide solutions to intricate problems and complex issues in various aspects of the different industries and sectors. According to various reports by US News & World, CNBC, and Forbes, the state leads in terms of STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) growth and orientation. This goes a long way in ensuring that companies in the state enjoy an uninterrupted supply of talent and as a result, doing business in Colorado is easier.
  • Advanced and diverse industries – The economy of the state of Colorado is highly growth oriented and this is driven by the diverse and dynamic portfolio of industries. There are the traditional sectors as well as the more advanced technology driven sectors. You can form a business in any of these sectors and also apply for Colorado small business incentives even in the evolving and dense cluster of high-tech sectors. Some of the top industries include aerospace, advanced manufacturing, electronics, bioscience, infrastructure engineering, energy, and information technology.
  • Access to National and Global market – The state of Colorado enjoys a central location and one of the three states in the USA with straight lines of latitude and longitude. The state shares its borders with Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, New Mexico, and Oklahoma. Colorado is currently ranked 32 out of 50 states in terms of exports and has Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ) and FTZ’s offer several benefits for small businesses. Since Colorado follows the Mountain Time Zone, this enables same-day communication with both East Asia and Western Europe during the normal work hours. It is also home to the Denver International Airport (DIA) that is counted amongst the top five U.S. airports and makes doing business in Colorado effortless especially for export and import.

Enjoy Colorado state benefits by registering your company today!

Small Business Incentive Programs and Grants in Colorado

When you form a new LLC or a corporation in Colorado, there are multiple benefits that you can leverage right from Colorado small business grants to tax credits and incentive programs. These programs have been created specifically for helping small businesses and medium enterprises so that they can spend more time focusing on business operations. Here is a list of some of the most popular Colorado small business funding and incentive programs in the state.

Small Business Grants in Colorado

A small-business grant can be termed as a financial award that is provided by state governments, foundations, and other private entities to a small business or startup. The primary objective of these Colorado small business grants is to incentivize performance or facilitate achievement of business goals. Normally, a Colorado grant is considered a gift and hence doesn’t require companies to pay back. Let’s look at some of the most popular grant programs that can provide you with the necessary Colorado small business funding.

Advanced Industries Collaborative Infrastructure Grant

The Advanced Industries Collaborative Infrastructure Grant funds are one of the top Colorado small business grants that focuses on the advanced industries in the state. This grant program is considered to be an integral part of the Advanced Industries Accelerator (AIA) Program and is governed and administered by the Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT). The amount of Colorado small business funding that you can receive through this grant varies from $50,000 to $500,000 per project. The application period for this grant is between February and April each year.

Business Foundations Technical Assistance Program

The Business Foundations Technical Assistance Program has been created primarily to provide technical assistance as well as small grants to companies doing business in Colorado. This program is a little different from any other grant program as it includes 3 types of training paths that businesses are required to complete followed by a certification. Once this training is completed, businesses will be eligible to apply for grants of up to $1,200.

Employee Ownership Grant

This is one of the newest Colorado small business grants programs that has been launched by the Colorado Employee Ownership Office (EOO). This grant will be available to all small businesses headquartered in Colorado. Its primary objective is to reimburse professional technical services that are often required for the employee-ownership transition. The eligible professional services include legal services, accounting services, and business valuation services. This Colorado grant can also be used by companies for repayment of their Colorado Employee Ownership Loan.

Small Business Accelerated Growth

The small business accelerated growth program is being administered by the Colorado office of economic development (OED). The program entails the awarding of 326 grants distributing an amount of $1,785,000 in Colorado small business funding to companies across the state. The objective of this program is to provide business development support to those companies that have 19 or fewer employees.

State Trade Expansion Program Grant

The State Trade Expansion Program (STEP) Grant has been created specifically to help startups and small businesses in expanding internationally. This Colorado small business grants program provides funding necessary for activities related to international business development. The main purpose of this Colorado grant is to offset the cost of international expansion. The maximum amount of Colorado small business funding that a company can receive is $10,000 in a year. Some of the activities that can be funded through this program include:

  • Holding business meetings internationally
  • Compliance testing
  • Attending international trade shows
  • Researching of new markets globally
  • Updating marketing materials for newer markets

Other Small Business Incentives and Programs in Colorado

Apart from grant programs, companies in the state can also apply for the wide variety of Colorado small business incentives offered by government bodies and private institutions. These programs can play a key role in helping you minimize the initial cost of doing business in Colorado. Let’s look at some of the popular programs.

Advanced Industry Investment Tax Credit

The top Colorado small business incentives program is the Colorado Advanced Industry Investment Tax Credit (AITC) program. The primary purpose of this program is to help those companies that are operating within the Colorado advanced industry sector. This program enables such companies to receive capital from diverse investors in the state. The legislation responsible for the creation of this program is House Bill 14-1012 and the qualifying industry sectors include Advanced Manufacturing, Infrastructure Engineering, Bioscience, Information Tech, Energy/Natural Resources/Cleantech, Electronics, and Aerospace. Investors and advanced industry businesses can benefit from a tax credit of 25 to 35 percent for every investment of $100,000.

Enterprise Zone Program

Enterprise zones (EZs) are geographically marked areas in each state including Colorado. If a company is located within such a zone then they can qualify for different types of subsidies and Colorado small business incentives. The purpose of the Colorado Enterprise Zone (EZ) program is to encourage small businesses to stay, locate, or expand in such zones to revitalize local communities. Companies can benefit from income tax credits, property tax abatements, as well as other tax incentives for locating in this zone. There are 16 designated enterprise zones in the state and if you locate in any of the designated zones then you can be eligible for sales and use tax exemptions as well as state income tax credits for specific investments.

Rural Jump-Start Program

There are different types of incentive programs available for doing business in Colorado and one such program is the Rural Jump-Start Program. This program is a collaborative effort between the local and state governments, economic development organizations (EDO), and Institutes of Higher Education (IHE). The purpose is to incentivize new businesses for starting a business in or moving their company to rural and economically distressed counties within Colorado. This is a tax credit and grant program under which companies can derive relief from:

  • State income taxes for new businesses
  • County personal property tax
  • State sales and use tax
  • State income tax for qualified new hires
  • Municipal personal property tax

A company located in the rural jump-start zone can receive Colorado small business funding through grants of up to $20,000.

Colorado Opportunity Zone Program

Opportunity Zones have been created under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. They have been created on the lines of promoting economic development through investment by businesses in distressed areas of the state. This will not only spur economic growth but also lead to job creation in Colorado low-income communities while ensuring investors or companies enjoy Colorado small business incentives and other tax benefits. Colorado is home to 126 designated Opportunity Zones and if you operate your business in such a zone then you will benefit from elimination and deferral of federal and state capital gains taxes.

Venture Capital Authority

The Venture Capital Authority (VCA) has been created to provide the much needed access to venture capital for startups and entrepreneurs in the state. The VCA program is a Colorado small business funding program that specializes in providing funding for early-stage or seed startups. The funding distribution available is 50 percent for statewide businesses; 25 percent for rural businesses and 25 percent to startups situated in distressed urban communities. The maximum amount of investment available can vary from $50,000 to $3.25 million.

Ready to Start a Business in Colorado?

Whether you are a small business or a startup planning to locate within a distressed zone in Colorado, the state offers several types of financial assistance. You can choose from Colorado small business incentives to applying for grants and other forms of funding. Some areas like opportunity zones also offer tax credit programs. If you are thinking of starting a new business and post registration or incorporation in this state, you will be able to take advantage of these Colorado small business funding opportunities and programs.

IncParadise is an expert incorporation provider and one of the most reputed Colorado registered agent services. We can help you to start a business in this state. We also provide additional services that can help your company to maintain compliance with all state requirements like filing of the annual report.

Form a new business in Colorado today!