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Maryland Manufacturers Can Apply for Grants Up to $500,000

Maryland Manufacturers Can Apply for Grants Up to $500,000

Manufacturing & Distribution

Eligible Maryland manufacturing businesses can receive up to $500,000 in state funding as part of the Maryland Manufacturing 4.0 Grant Program. The program supports manufacturing businesses that invest in cutting-edge technologies to remain competitive and contribute to the growth of Maryland’s manufacturing sector.

The application window opened July 2023 and will close October 18, 2023.

What Is Industry 4.0?

According to a press release issued by Maryland’s Department of Commerce, “Similar to smart manufacturing, Industry 4.0 represents the fourth industrial revolution. It focuses on the digitization and automation of manufacturing facilities to help companies remain competitive and drive business growth.”

You can read more about Industry 4.0 in our blog post, What Is Industry 4.0?

What Is the Maryland Manufacturing 4.0 Grant Program?

The Maryland Manufacturing 4.0 Grant Program is a state-funded initiative that aims to support the growth and development of Maryland’s manufacturing industry. The program offers financial assistance to small and medium-sized manufacturing enterprises that are looking to adopt new technologies and processes associated with Industry 4.0, such as automation, robotics, data analytics and additive manufacturing.

Grants are administered by the Maryland Department of Commerce and range from $25,000 to $500,000 depending on the manufacturer’s number of employees.

Grants will be awarded on a competitive basis based on:

  • The proposed project’s alignment with the adoption of Industry 4.0 technologies

  • The applicant’s demonstrated overall commitment to or strategy for Industry 4.0 technology adoption

  • The demonstrated positive impact of Industry 4.0 technology on the applicant’s business operations and competitiveness

Grant awards require matching funds from the applicant as follows:

  • 3-50 employees require a 25% match by the applicant, and grants can cover up to 25% of the total project costs

  • 51-250 employees require a 50% match with grants up to 50% of the total project costs

Eligibility Requirements for the Maryland Manufacturing 4.0 Grant Program

Your manufacturing business is eligible for funds if you meet the following requirements:

  1. Be an existing business in good standing with the state of Maryland,

  2. Have between 3-250 full-time employees (defined as an employee who works at least 1,800 hours in a 12-month period),

  3. Have a two-digit NAICS code of 31-33,
  4. Have been established for a minimum of three years,

  5. Be in good standing with federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration and Maryland Occupational Safety and Health regulations,

  6. Demonstrate an ability to successfully implement the proposed project,

  7. Demonstrate an overall commitment to, or strategy for, Industry 4.0 adoption and

  8. Demonstrate ability to provide matching funds.

Examples of Eligible Technologies to Invest In

You can find a full list of technologies that are eligible for the grant program here.

Systems that allow manufacturers to better analyze data within their organization and make better decisions based on that data (think big data and business analytics) are considered an eligible technology.

Another qualified project is systems integration, either vertically sharing data within the organization to improve efficiencies or horizontally across supply chains.

Finally, employee training and/or consulting costs associated with the implementation of new systems, technologies and equipment can qualify for grant money.

How to Apply for Funds

The Department of Commerce began accepting applications for the grant on July 15, 2023. The application window will close October 18, 2023 and awardees will be announced by December 2023.

If additional funding becomes available during 2023, a second round of grant applications will be accepted in early 2024.

Instructions are here. Completed applications should be emailed to m4grant.commerce@maryland.gov.

What Should You Do Next?

Review the full eligibility requirements here. If you qualify, submit your completed application by Friday, October 18 at 5:00pm.

If you think your business would benefit from new technology, but you’re not sure where to start, contact our Technology Solutions Group here for a consultation. Our team of technology experts has experience with some of the qualified technology projects, such as systems integration, data analytics and dashboards, and software training.

How the Maryland Manufacturing 4.0 Grant Program Came to Be

It’s no secret that we are experiencing a labor crisis in Maryland and across the United States. Entrepreneurs in all industries are seeking ways to solve their labor dilemma. For manufacturers, “smart machines” have been identified as an alternative solution. The problem? Cost. It is quite expensive to purchase Industry 4.0 technology, not to mention the costs to implement, train and maintain the equipment.

The Maryland Manufacturing Extension Partnership (Maryland MEP) and Regional Manufacturing Institute (RMI) teamed up with Maryland legislators and other key industry stakeholders to create House Bill 622, which aims to assist assist Maryland manufacturers with the cost of new technologies. Maryland House Bill 622 was signed into law May 2023.

According to a joint announcement issued via email by the Regional Manufacturing Institute and Maryland MEP, the legislation is “A big step forward for manufacturers” and “a win for manufacturers statewide.”

In a video filmed prior to the bill being signed, Mike Galiazzo, president of the Regional Manufacturing Institute of Maryland, said “this fund will allow these companies to purchase advanced Industry 4.0 technologies and will help provide matching funds for these purchases.”

Need Help?

Contact us here or call 800.899.4623.

 

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Published on August 07, 2023