The life science community has been anxiously waiting for the announcement of the awards for the $1 billion Qualifying Therapeutic Discovery Project program and the results are out!

Many Bay Area companies did quite well, receiving all or part of what they asked for; this was particularly true for smaller companies. Four of the five companies RoseRyan worked with to develop applications received grants ranging from $244,479 to $733,438. (As a finance professional, I have to ask, Why the odd amounts? So far, we haven’t got an answer to that one.)

The program, part of the health care bill, was designed to spur research and development at biotech companies with 250 or fewer employees through awards of tax credits or grants. According to the San Francisco Business Times, the Treasury Department received applications for about 5,600 projects. The Times published a partial list of Bay Area recipients, and you can see the full lists of recipients by state at the IRS website.)

Last June, my colleague Chris Vane and I spoke with about ten companies at a free consultation with BayBio, and did work for five. This involved helping them write or edit the grant and providing strategic advice, leveraging our prior grant submission work with the Department of Energy as part of our cleantech practice. These companies said it was very useful to sit down with us and talk with them about their strategy for writing grants. We played devil’s advocate, asking questions and helping them look at their business plan strategically.

There could be more grant opportunities cropping up in the future, and it never hurts to apply for a grant or other funding, because it presents an opportunity to take a hard look at your business and appraise why the work is important, where you want to take it and how you will get there.