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$35M OCIE SBDC California Dream Fund Grants

California Dream Fund Grant

The OCIE SBDC Network is partnering with the California Office of the Small Business Advocate (CalOSBA) to provide eligible small businesses the opportunity to apply for a grant award.  OCIE SBDC California Dream Fund Grant

About the Dream Fund

The California Dream Fund is a one-time $35 million grant program providing grants up to $10,000 to seed entrepreneurship and small business creation for businesses started in California on or after July 1, 2019.

The grant is available to qualifying businesses that meet all eligibility criteria and complete a small business training program provided by the OCIE SBDC. You must attend every session to be eligible.

Grant Eligibility

  • Business must be located in Orange, Riverside, or San Bernardino County
  • Business registration must have occurred on or after July 1st, 2019.
  • Must have a “qualifying event” that starts the business
       • Must be formally registered to do business in Orange, Riverside, or San Bernardino County
        • Businesses can start the program without being registered but must be able to show proof of registration prior to being referred for a grant.
        • Business registration must have occurred on or after July 1st, 2019.
        • Entities must also demonstrate they are “in business” by having completed one of the following “Qualifying” events:
            • Has made their first sale
            • Has hired at least one employee, or
            • Has created a business banking relationship, or
            • Has spent money on business expenses (this includes legal and accounting fees)
  • Must be a business with 5 FTE employees or less and $1 million or less in annual receipts.
  • Must not be a current or former (within the last 18 months) staff or immediate family of an OCIE SBDC Network staff or consultant
  • Cannot currently own another business, only meant for those starting their first business.
  • Must not have received a grant from the California Dream Fund previously, either from the OCIE SBDC or another participating program – only one grant per entity and person is allowed.

California Dream Fund Program Steps

Meet all the eligibility requirements above? Take the first step in being eligible for the Dream Fund.

  • Begin by signing up and completing an approved OCIE SBDC training program
  • Begin one-on-one consulting with an OCIE SBDC consultant.
  • Complete required documents:
  • California Dream Fund approved Business Plan
  • Complete all the necessary licenses and permits to legally start the business.
  • Open a business bank account
  • Attend an OCIE SBDC Application webinar (scheduled regularly throughout the program).
  • Complete a survey at the completion of the training program (Will be sent by OCIE SBDC Lead Center)
  • Have a “Qualifying” event to start the business.
  • Upload documents to Datarooms
  • Receive a completion certificate and special Lendistry application code from the OCIE SBDC.
  • Apply for the California Dream Fund.

Learn more here.

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