Blackstone Innovation Grants
Each year, The Blackstone Charitable Foundation makes a series of targeted grants to entrepreneurial organizations that spread the ideals of entrepreneurship and benefit local communities as part of the Blackstone Innovation Grants program. In coordination with its regional efforts to spur entrepreneurship around the country and the world, the Foundation is creating a national and global network in which the participating organizations can share best practices, methodologies, and contacts, and are connected with Blackstone’s intellectual capital and resources.
The Blackstone Charitable Foundation releases an annual Request for Proposal (RFP) as part of this program, targeting organizations that focus on entrepreneurship and innovation. Grants are directed towards organizations that promote entrepreneurship through education or advance high-growth initiatives. The application period for the Blackstone Innovation Grants is now open, and we will be accepting applications until October 3, 2014. Please click here to apply and learn more about the program.
Existing Innovation Grants:
The Idea Village (New Orleans, LA) - $70,000
Our funding will allow The Idea Village, an organization that identifies, supports, and retains talent in New Orleans, to further scale the services and resources it provides during its Entrepreneurship Season by updating its website and creating an online community for the New Orleans entrepreneurial ecosystem.
Launch Tennessee (Nashville, TN) - $100,000
Our funding will allow Launch Tennessee, an organization that promotes entrepreneurship, fosters the commercialization of technologies, and raises the profile of the state, to pilot a program that will recruit “specialists” from universities to provide support to existing accelerator teams in critical areas such as coding, application development, and market research.
MoneyThink (Chicago, IL) - $50,000
Our funding will allow Moneythink, an organization that trains college volunteers to mentor youth in low-income communities, to scale its entrepreneurship program to Los Angeles and New England by hiring a Chief Innovation Officer to expand its technology system.
One Hen, Inc. (Boston, MA) - $50,000
Our funding will allow One Hen, an organization that teaches entrepreneurship to elementary school children, to strengthen its online student entrepreneurial community by building the open source Blackstone Charitable Foundation Youth Entrepreneurship Resource Library on their new website.
Tumml (San Francisco, CA) - $80,000
Our funding will provide Tumml, an urban impact accelerator supporting early stage companies developing innovative consumer products and services, with resources to expand their website, create research and reports, and host events and a conference for leaders in the urban impact space.
Venture for America (New York, NY) - $100,000
Our funding will allow Venture for America (VFA), an organization that recruits fellows to work for two years at emerging start-ups in lower-cost cities, to build the VFA Accelerator, a business plan development curriculum and training for its 2012 and 2013 fellows.
New Innovation Grants:
The Aspen Institute (Washington D.C.) - $125,000
Our funding will allow the Aspen Institute’s Partners for a New Beginning, a program that advances economic opportunity in the Middle East and North Africa in the areas of entrepreneurship, education and innovation, to host a week-long delegation in New York City and San Francisco/Silicon Valley in October 2014 that will bring together seasoned US and Middle Eastern and North African entrepreneurs.
BioSTL (St. Louis, MO) - $100,000
Our funding will allow BioSTL, an organization that seeks to advance regional prosperity in St. Louis, to expand the scope of its Bioscience Inclusion Initiative by identifying high-potential women and minority bioscience entrepreneurs and providing a systematic pathway for them to create viable high-growth ventures.
BUILD (Redwood, CA) - $100,000
Our funding will allow BUILD, an organization that teaches entrepreneurship to propel high-risk students to college success, to launch the Blackstone School-Based Innovation Incubator program at two schools in Washington, DC to pilot this program to expand entrepreneurship opportunities for disadvantaged students.
Centre for Social Innovation (Toronto, ON and New York, NY) - $100,000
Our funding will allow the Centre for Social Innovation, a workspace that supports a board range of start-up activities for social entrepreneurs, to replicate their successful Toronto program in New York City and connect entrepreneurs to subject matter experts across a wide range of topics and professionals service areas.
Launch NY (Buffalo, NY) - $125,000
Our funding will allow Launch NY, a collaboration of major economic development organizations in upstate New York that support high-growth, high-impact companies, to develop the Launch NY Entrepreneur Institute, a program that will strengthen the entrepreneurial ecosystem by expanding the reach of resources and services available in upstate New York.
Nonprofit Enterprise and Self-Sustainability Team (“NESsT”) (San Francisco, CA) - $150,000
Our funding will allow NESsT, an organization that supports enterprises serving vulnerable communities to replicate its successful University Social Entrepreneurship Program in Peru to Brazil. This program will incubate a pipeline of high-impact social businesses in partnership with universities and their student entrepreneurs.
Points of Light/Civic Accelerator (Atlanta, GA) - $100,000
Our funding will allow Points of Light’s Civic Accelerator (“CivicX”), a national program that inspires, equips and mobilizes entrepreneurs, to pilot a regionally-focused accelerator in Atlanta, Georgia.
Rice University (Houston, TX) - $50,000
Our funding will allow the Rice University Startup Accelerator, OwlSpark, to launch the National University Accelerator Network, which will connect university-based accelerators, share best practices, link university-based startups and mentor and investor networks across the country.
Telluride Foundation (Telluride, CO) - $100,000
Our funding will allow the Telluride Foundation’s Telluride Venture Accelerator (“TVA”), a program that invests human and financial capital in innovative enterprises in the Telluride area, to scale the program to include more companies and expand its mentor network.
UP Global (Seattle, WA) - $100,000
Our funding will allow UP Global’s Startup Weekend, a global organization dedicated to providing resources and programs to entrepreneurs, to support “Promoting Women in Entrepreneurship” events, activities, and a marketing campaign across the country.
University of California Hastings College of the Law (San Francisco, CA) - $100,000
Our funding will allow UC Hasting College’s Institute for Innovation Law to create a program that will allow law students to provide free legal support and services to technology entrepreneurs in San Francisco and Silicon Valley, focusing on traditionally underserved minority and female technology entrepreneurs.

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