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January 31, 2024 | Tom Ballard

New Jersey provides entrepreneurs up to $400,000 in income replacement grants

It's part of the New Jersey Innovation Fellows program that represents the state's commitment to fostering innovation and supporting business ventures in their critical early stages.

The New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) is making it easier for 30 entrepreneurs representing 10 businesses to participate in its inaugural cohort of the New Jersey Innovation Fellows (NJIF) program.

The 10 companies will receive a total of $3.6 million in income replacement grants, as well as mentorship and training. The  program’s innovative approach of providing income replacement grants to diverse teams ensures entrepreneurs of all backgrounds can fully dedicate themselves to growing their ventures without the financial strain typically associated with the early stages of businesses development. This is particularly true for many first-time entrepreneurs, diverse entrepreneurs, and recent grad students, who may not be able to forego steady income, leaving a gap in the state’s innovation economy.

Each team receives an income replacement grant of $200,000. A bonus grant is available to teams located in designated opportunity zones. Additionally, bonus grants are available to teams with members who self-certify as a woman or minority or graduated from a New Jersey college or university. A team can receive a total of up to $400,000 in grants. This year’s cohort welcomes 20 first time entrepreneurs accumulating $1.7 million in bonus grant funding.

Selected from a competitive pool of entrepreneurs, the inaugural round of NJIF companies will support ventures in the fields of life sciences, film, information technology, and professional services over a two-year period. The inaugural cohort marks an important milestone in the NJEDA’s commitment to fostering innovation and supporting business ventures in their critical early stages.

To learn more about the program and the inaugural participants, click here.

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