Commercialization Plan Guidance for Phase II Applications

The commercialization plan should provide a description of each of the following areas:

  • Introduction of the SBIR Project and Expected Outcomes: Describe, in layperson's terms, the proposed project and its key technology objectives. Clarify the need addressed, specifying weaknesses in the current approaches to meet this need. In addition, describe the commercial applications of the research and the innovation inherent in the application.
  • Company Information: Give a brief description of your company including corporate objectives, core competencies, size (annual sales level and number and types of employees for the last 5 years, if company has existed for more than 5 years), and any current products/services that have significant sales. Those grantees existing for less than five years should provide this information for the years they have been operational.  Indicate your vision for the future and how you will grow/maintain a sustainable business entity. Include a short description of the origins of the company.
  • The Market, Customer, and Competition: Describe the market and/or market segments (for the product, technology or service) you are targeting and provide information on the size of the market and a brief profile of the potential customer. Tell what significant advantages your innovation will bring to the market (e.g., better performance, lower cost, faster, more efficient or effective, new capability). Explain the hurdles you will need to overcome in order to gain market/customer acceptance of your innovation. Briefly explain the plans you have for approaching your potential customers (i.e., your marketing and sales strategy). Describe the current competition and any potential competitors over the next several years.  Include a schedule showing the projected needs (e.g., amount of additional investment, timeframe, etc.) from the end of Phase II until commercialization. Applicant should also indicate any other potential commercial factors.
  • Intellectual Property: Describe how you will protect the intellectual property that results from your innovation. Note any actions you may consider to attain at least a temporary competitive advantage.  What is the company’s prior record in this area?  Please comment on the company’s strategy to build a sustainable business through protection of intellectual property.
  • Revenue Stream: Describe the plans for generating a revenue stream and include the assumptions that form the basis for revenue projections. Will the revenue stream as described be profitable to the company or at least sustain the product through its life cycle?
  • Financing: How will you raise the necessary financing for Phase III commercialization? Show you have a plan for this funding in one or more of the following ways:
    • A letter of commitment for follow-on funding;
    • A letter of intent or evidence of negotiations to provide funding, should the Phase II project be successful and the market need still exists;
    • A letter of support for the project and/or some in-kind commitment; and
    • A specific plan to secure Phase III funding. The progress of this plan must be commented on in the Phase II progress report.