When Congress returns next week, reauthorizing the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant program will be one of the many decisions policymakers need to address. BioWorld Today explored the VC loophole in a story today (“Squabbling Over VC Loophole Leaves SBIR Program in Limbo”). The article fairly presents both sides of the argument regarding whether majority VC-backed firms should have limited eligibility for the program.
All small, innovative companies should have the opportunity to compete for these grants, and awards should be based on the best science not financial structure regardless of their funding sources. The spirit of the program is to provide funding for companies working on innovative cures and treatments for life threatening diseases. By allowing more biotech start-ups to continue their important work in research and development will lead to significant medical advancements that can save and improve lives, and sustain our country’s position as the global leader in biotech innovation.
The SBIR grant program has been beneficial in promoting innovation in the past, and without the program, many early stage ideas would never have gotten off the ground (as the article points out). And obviously, we agree.
Kudos to BioWorld on such a fair and timely article.