A STEP in the right direction.

The State of Idaho has received a State Trade Expansion Program (STEP) Grant of $207,945 for program years September 30, 2020 – September 29, 2021. STEP is funded in part through a grant with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and is administered by Idaho Commerce. The goals of STEP are to increase the number of small businesses that export, increase the value of exports and increase the number of small businesses exploring significant new trade opportunities.

The application period for the Idaho Online Global Program AND Financial Assistance Awards begins December 2 and closes December 18 at 3pm MST.

Participants must meet SBA eligibility requirements to participate in the following STEP-funded programs.


 

Applying for a STEP Grant

STEP 1: Determine Eligibility

  • Find your NAICS code – https://www.naics.com/search
  • Use SBA Size Standards Tool – https://www.sba.gov/size-standards
    • Affiliates: You must include the employees or receipts of all affiliates when determining the size of a business. Affiliation with another business is based on the power to control, whether exercised or not. The power to control exists when an external party has 50 percent or more ownership. It may also exist with considerably less than 50 percent ownership by contractual arrangement or when one or more parties own a large share compared to other parties. Check the SBA’s compliance guide for size and affiliation for more detailed information.
    • Annual receipts: This is the “total income” (or “gross income”) plus the “cost of goods sold.” These numbers can normally be found on the business’s IRS tax return forms. Receipts are averaged over a business’s latest three complete fiscal years or (except in the Business Loan and Disaster Loan Programs) five complete fiscal years to determine the average annual receipts. If a business hasn’t been in business for five years, multiply its average weekly revenue by 52 to determine its average annual receipts. The SBA calculates annual receipts in accordance with 13 CFR 121.104.
    • Employee calculation: This is the average number of people employed for each pay period over the business’s latest 12 calendar months. Any person on the payroll must be included as one employee regardless of hours worked or temporary status. The number of employees of a concern in business less than 12 months is the average for each pay period that it has been in business. The SBA calculates number of employees in accordance with 13 CFR 121.106.
STEP 2: Learn

STEP 3: Evaluate

STEP 4: Register and Apply

  • Register for your online portal account to apply for a STEP Grant, contact Tina Salisbury at +1-208-287-3164 or tina.salisbury@commerce.idaho.gov. Logins must be requested 48 hours prior to application due dates. If your company has previously applied for any grants administered by Idaho Commerce, you are already set up in the system and will use that login to apply.
  • Request a copy of the application questions that will be found in the online portal system once it opens. This way you can get a bit of a head start.
  • Assistance determining eligibility under SBA requirements.
  • Get introduced to your industry’s International Trade Specialist at Idaho Commerce or the Idaho State Department of Agriculture. They are here to help you and can be a valuable resource during the application process, including tips before you upload your submission (time permitting).
  • The following required forms must be submitted with application. Applications are only accepted online at the Idaho Commerce Grant Portal.

     


Idaho Online Global Program

The Idaho Online Global Program application window will be open December 2-18 at 3:00pm MST.

REVIEW COMPLETE PROGRAM GUIDELINES

Overview

  • Individual awards ranging from $2,000 – $9,000 are available for eligible activity occurring between September 30, 2020 – September 29, 2021.
  • Only one application will be accepted per round. Multiple rounds are dependent upon the availability of funds.
  • 25% cash match required. For every authorized $100 you spend you will be reimbursed $75.
  • Reviewing and scoring processes are highly competitive.

Eligible activities for Financial Assistance Awards

  • Design and development of website, with an international focus
  • Oversight and maintenance and monitoring fees for search engine optimization
  • Online market listing fees
  • E-commerce platform fees, including hosting and/or maintenance fees
  • Expenses to set up websites to accept international payments

Financial Assistance Awards

The Financial Assistance Award application window will be open December 2-18 at 3:00pm MST.

REVIEW COMPLETE PROGRAM GUIDELINES

Overview

  • Individual awards ranging from $2,000 – $9,000 are available for eligible activity occurring between September 30, 2020 – September 29, 2021.
  • Only one application will be accepted per round. Multiple rounds are dependent upon the availability of funds.
  • 25% cash match required. For every authorized $100 you spend you will be reimbursed $75.
  • Reviewing and scoring processes are highly competitive.

Eligible activities for Financial Assistance Awards

  • Foreign market sales trips
  • Governor’s or foreign trade mission
  • Trade Show; International or Domestic*
  • Services provided by the U.S. Department of Commerce

*see guidelines for additional details/requirements