Seed Funding for Startups

In 2021, Burton D. Morgan Foundation initiated an experimental pilot project to provide catalytic funding to nonprofit organizations for dissemination to young businesses in the form of microgrants. This effort stemmed from observations that seed funding, often totaling less than $500, could spur business momentum.  The initiative, now called the Morgan Startup Grants program, has partnered with 17 organizations that have distributed 502 microgrants to 486 ventures, as of early 2024.  The program has:

  • Served as an exceptional engagement tool, with more than 50% of participants new to their entrepreneurship programs
  • Widened opportunities for founders beyond pitch competitions
  • Validated and instilled confidence in numerous founders, motivating them to transition from ideation to action
  • Leveraged funding from other donors

Uses for Morgan Startup Grants

Morgan Startup Grants have been used for a wide range of expenses:

  • Jumpstarting inventory
  • Acquiring a website
  • Duplicate molds to increase production
  • Conference attendance to connect with potential customers
  • Prototyping
  • Camera to create high quality content
  • LLCs
  • Microphones for podcasts
  • Signage
  • Textiles
  • Intern costs

Student recipients come from a wide range of majors, which have included fashion, digital media production, architecture, marketing, entrepreneurship, and even Arabic translation.

The Morgan Startup Grants Program for non-profit organizations and institutions is primarily proactive.  To learn more, contact Angela Evans.