Funding 101

What funding is right for you, your vision, and your company’s stage of growth? Browse through the local resources section of this website to find out what your best funding options are.

After funding from founders, friends and family, many start-ups seek seed funding (tens of thousands of dollars) before moving to angel funding (a few hundred thousand to a few million).  Many companies then seek venture capital (or VC) funding (a few million to several million). It is important to understand this typical funding progression and the investment criteria of each organization your are seeking funding from.

Grants
Grants

Grants are financing that don’t need to be repaid and they don’t cost you any shares of equity in your company.

View a listing of grants

Seed Funding
Seed Funding

Targeted at very early stage firms, seed funding are loans or grants that often come with mentoring, technical assistance, or other benefits to build your core business.

View a listing of seed funding

Angel Investors
Angel Investors

Groups of accredited investors who purchase equity in growing companies. In addition to money, angels often provide technical support or provide contacts.

View a listing of angel investors

Venture Capital
Venture Capital

Investment firms who make very large equity investments in disruptive, high growth companies. Venture firms typically invest large sums and expect to recoup far more than their original investment.

View a listing of  venture capital

Crowd Funding
Crowd Funding

Financing a project or venture by raising many small amounts of money from a large number of people, typically via the Internet. Crowd funding can take the form of donations, loans, or equity. Crowdsourcing.org lists hundreds of crowdsourcing websites for every sector from fashion marketing to environmental products.

View a listing of crowd funding

Selling Equity
Selling Equity

When you sell shares of equity to an investor, they are buying a portion of the ownership in your company.

Loans
Loans

Loans need to be repaid, usually with interest. Loans can come from the public sector, not just banks. Gap financing loans can complete your financing package by matching the money you borrow from traditional sources.

View a listing of loans

Convertible Debt
Convertible Debt

This is a loan where the lender has the option to convert the debt into shares of equity in your company instead of being repaid in cash.

Tax Credits
Tax Credits

These are credits to qualified companies. In some instances, companies that qualify for tax credits can resell them on a secondary market for cash.

View a listing of tax credits