Manufacturing Corps (M-Corps) (PON 5209)

Due Date:  01/04/2023  (Round 1)

Description

Many promising startup companies that offer hardware-based climate technologies (“climatetech”) struggle to traverse the many challenges of manufacturing to bring a physical product to market because of the capital intensity and long lead times associated with the initial manufacturing of products for the climatetech market. Many startups lack understanding of how or where their products can be made or if they can produce their climatetech product profitably at scale. When startup companies do not have a strong manufacturing strategy, they often struggle to secure private investment or strategic corporate partnerships. Hardware startup companies experience a cash flow squeeze when they manufacture.  
At the same time, manufacturers are often hesitant to work with startup companies because startups are not prepared with critical deliverables like technical drawings of a product designed for manufacturing at scale or the appropriate cash flow to fund production. In addition, the manufacturers often do not understand the specific needs of startups and are underprepared to identify and leverage best practices for working with them. These challenges create difficult circumstances for a startup company, representing a significant risk for a manufacturing partner.   
These knowledge/resource gaps can result in a startup company’s stall or outright failure. NYSERDA has conducted extensive customer discovery and research at the intersection of hardware startup companies, manufacturers, and investors, and has determined there is an increased likelihood the startup will successfully scale by evolving the nature of engagements between these three entities.  
NYSERDA’s strategy through the M-Corps Program is to: 
  • Provide operational and programming support to organizations offering services to manufacturers and climatetech startups to achieve key manufacturing milestones; 
  •  Accelerate the time it takes to move from a prototype to a commercial product; and 
  •  Facilitate connections and agreements between in-state manufacturers and innovative climatetech companies. 
This NYSERDA solicitation seeks proposals that build on the successes of the State’s existing programs and focus on overcoming the challenges of product manufacturing for climatetech startup companies to advance the State’s Climate Act goals, bring jobs to the State, and bolster New York’s manufacturing industry. To support this goal, the M-Corps program will: 
  • Prioritize the most promising climatetech companies providing decarbonization solutions for key greenhouse gas (GHG)-emitting sectors in New York State, regardless of origin 
  • Provide technical support from the prototype phase throughout the manufacturing process to enable climatetech companies to advance their Manufacturing Readiness Level(s) rapidly 
  • Deliver education to climatetech hardware startups to navigate time-sensitive, critical decisions throughout the development of their manufacturing capability and the manufacturing process 
  • Build a supplier network within the State and connect innovative climatetech companies directly with suppliers to drive collaboration and business agreements  
  • Facilitate partnerships between climatetech companies, suppliers, and manufacturers to increase the number of new innovative solutions being manufactured in New York State to support the State’s climate goals and clean energy industry  
NYSERDA is offering up to $3,750,000.00 in funding available through this PON for the initial phase of the program, with funds intended to cover approximately 36 months of services. Future program funding may be available. While subcontracting is allowed, one award will be made under the solicitation.  
 

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