Financial Assistance

Stemina Biomarker Discovery

Stemina Biomarker Discovery has 11 employees. Founded in 2006, it has raised $9.5 million so far from investors, grants and loans.

Financial assistance is available to businesses whether they are just starting out, relocating or looking to expand. MGE's economic development team can help you sort through federal, state and local programs to develop a financing package that meets your needs.

Federal financial assistance

  • Since 1983, Wisconsin firms have received more than $353 million from the Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer programs. Small, high-tech, innovative businesses receive funds to conduct federal government research and development efforts. Historically, the Madison region has captured 75% of the state's SBIR awards.

  • is a resource to find and apply for federal government grants. Before completing an application, please contact the agency to which you are applying to make sure they use

State financial assistance

Take advantage of Wisconsin's numerous financing programs. Assistance is available for start-up projects, training, technology development, environmental improvements and more.

  • The Center for Technology Commercialization offers up to $8,000 in the form of a micro grant to help businesses apply for federal funding.
  • Focus on Energy works with eligible Wisconsin businesses to install cost-effective energy efficiency and renewable energy projects. Focus provides information, resources and financial incentives to help implement projects.
  • The U.S. Small Business Administration (which has a local office in Madison) offers a wide range of loan guaranty programs through local banks for businesses.
  • Wisconsin Business Development assists small businesses in gaining access to capital, mainly through Small Business Administration loan products. The organization also provides consulting and loan packaging services to banks and borrowers.
  • Wisconsin Department of Transportation's Transportation Economic Assistance Grant is a matching grant program to help finance transportation-related infrastructure improvements. Projects are capped at $1 million and will fund $5,000 for every full-time equivalent employee created and retained.
  • Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. provides financial assistance to entrepreneurial and existing businesses.
  • The Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority provides small business and agricultural financing.
  • Wisconsin State Energy Office provides information and listings of Wisconsin grant programs, federal grants/incentives and private monies available for renewable energy and fuel-related projects.

Local financial assistance

Madison and the surrounding communities provide several business financing options including industrial revenue bonds, community development block grants, revolving loan funds and improvement programs.

MGE financial assistance

  • MGE helped create the Venture Debt Fund Program, a $4 million venture debt fund designed to provide debt financing to emerging growth companies. The debt is structured with repayment forecast from the company's ability to reach cash flow break even with its existing liquidity or the company's ability to raise additional capital. The fund is intended to be complementary to early stage equity sources of capital and stretch the ability of growth companies to access capital at a predictable cost while giving up minimal ownership or control.
  • MGE helped create the Venture Investors Early Stage Fund III, a $30 million venture capital fund that helps start-up companies, especially firms that specialize in biotechnology, medical devices, software and optical telecommunications technology.

Other local resources

Early stage/venture financial assistance

Wisconsin's network of angel investors provides early stage financing for technology-based businesses, life sciences companies and more. Tax credits for accredited angel and early stage investors are available when investments are made in Qualified New Business Ventures.

The Wisconsin legislature passed a $25 million early stage capital bill that creates a state-leveraged fund-of-funds to help Wisconsin start up companies.

Some angel investors serving southern Wisconsin
  • Phenomenelle Angels Fund I, LP is a women's angel investment fund that invests in women/minority-owned or managed businesses in Wisconsin/Midwest. The fund focuses on seed and early stage growth companies in the IT, life sciences, consumer goods/services and communications sectors.
  • Silicon Pastures provides seed and later-round financing and other business development service.
  • The Wisconsin Angel Network's mission is to build angel network capital capacity throughout Wisconsin to increase the number and amount of seed stage equity investments in Wisconsin companies, which will create jobs and improve our economy. View a map of the Wisconsin angel and venture investment groups.
  • Wisconsin Investment Partners is a life sciences-oriented angel investment network that provides mentoring, strategic analysis, business planning and general financing assistance.

Wisconsin's venture capital firms help fund companies that have superior growth potential

  • Advantage Capital Wisconsin Partners offers financing for early stage life sciences and information technology companies plus later stage businesses on the verge of profitability.
  • Baird Venture Partners invests in early-to-late stage companies from three industries: applied technology, business services and life sciences.
  • Calumet Venture Fund - Entrepreneurs Helping Entrepreneurs was formed to invest in the next generation of high-growth technology companies in the Midwest.
  • Kegonsa Capital Partners, LLC is a venture capital management firm that uses a Money for Minnow investment strategy designed to obtain the national average investor return for each venture investment segment by increasing new company creation.
  • Madison Development Corp. Venture Debt Fund provides debt financing to emerging growth companies in Dane County.
  • Mason Wells is a middle-market private equity investor that helps entrepreneurs who need capital to start a business, acquire a business or grow.
  • Peak Ridge Capital Group, Inc. is an alternative asset management firm that executes investment activities in four areas of expertise: private equity, hedge funds, real estate and advisory.
  • Venture Investors, LLC, provides seed and early stage funding for health care (biotechnology and medical devices) and information technology businesses.

To find out what other financial resources are available to businesses in the Greater Madison Region, please contact us.