Startup Services

Set your trajectory from the start.

Mayo Clinic Ventures

Mayo Clinic Ventures is responsible for commercializing Mayo Clinic’s intellectual property and is uniquely qualified to respond to the call for the advancement of health-related technologies. As a global leader in the delivery of whole-person health care, Mayo is involved in the comprehensive landscape of human disease. They encourage and promote collaboration with commercial partners to produce meaningful, effective changes for better health and medicine.

How they can help:

  • Innovation Program: Derived from the licensing revenue Mayo generates, this program awards up to $200,000 to early-stage companies for uses such as constructing prototypes (medical devices) or conducting animal tests (pharmaceuticals). It is open to Mayo-generated ideas as well as to outside entrepreneurs partnering with Mayo doctors.

  • Translation Program: Under this seed funding effort, technologies that show promise through first-phase work are eligible for further investments of up to $300,000. This could include pharmaceutical candidates seeking to perform more animal testing before being eligible for FDA-approved clinical trials.

  • Benefactor Fund: This seed program is funded by philanthropic donations and designed to help start-ups complete their first clinical trials (pharmaceuticals) or applications in clinical settings (devices and software).

  • Entrepreneur in Residence Program: Assists in the commercialization of the best ideas, typically developed by Mayo Clinic physicians and other clinicians as they pursue optimal treatments for patients.

  • Facilitates collaboration with renowned researchers across specialties to solve complex research questions. This close integration makes it possible to quickly bring proven diagnostics and therapeutics to patients.


The SBDC offers at no cost, confidential consulting to help businesses in SE Minnesota identify, understand and overcome the challenges of starting a business, running a successful business, and developing exit strategies. The Southeast Minnesota SBDC provides the professional expertise and guidance every small business owner needs to stay competitive in today’s ever-changing business world.

How they can help:

  • Combines the resources of higher education, government, and the private sector to provide consulting, training, and other services to small businesses.

  • Although they do not lend money directly, SBDC works with business owners and financial institutions to prepare documentation that lenders require.

  • Seminars with varying topics are offered to the general public.


CEDA offers economic and community development services which assist 16+ communities and five county organizations in Southeast Minnesota.

How they can help:

  • Offers individualized help for business start-up, expansion or relocation.

  • Assists with business plan development, financial packaging, loan analysis and marketing.

  • Operates the SBA Small Business Development Center for Winona and Fillmore counties in Minnesota which offers confidential one-on-one consultation free of charge. Consultation is offered for inquiries pertaining to SBA loans, conventional bank financing, local revolving loan fund processing, business plan development, updating and training.

  • Offers Microenterprise Fund loans for up to $35,000. These loans are designed for start-up, newly established, or growing businesses and used for seed capital, working capital, purchase of inventory and equipment, real estate, building renovation and expansion capital.


SCORE is a national non-profit that assists people in starting a new business, buying or selling a business, and by providing counseling to existing small business owners.

How they can help:

  • The Southeast Minnesota Chapter of SCORE provides free and confidential one-on-one business Mentoring tailored to meet the needs of your small business and your personal objectives.

  • The Chapter also offers Local Workshops for a modest fee, for both start-up entrepreneurs and in-business small business owners.

  • Business mentoring is free and you are encouraged to return as many times as needed.

  • A large selection of Online Workshops are offered on the SCORE website.

  • Their website has an extensive list of templates and tools for beginning entrepreneurs, covering a wide range of topics from financing to technology to customer relations.


The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) focuses on improving the quality of the state’s workforce.

How they can help:

  • Connects workers to jobs and prepares workers for jobs in demand.

  • Job Training Grant Program - allows DEED to reimburse employers for eligible training costs.

  • State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI) – This fund provides access to capital for small businesses through the Capital Access Program, Emerging Entrepreneur Fund and Angel Loan Fund.

MN Department of Revenue

The Minnesota Department of Revenue manages the state’s revenue system and administers state tax laws. They manage over 30 different taxes and collect over $20.5 billion annually. This money funds education, economic development incentives and grants for businesses, and other state programs and operations.

How they can help:

  • Provides tax information for those starting a business.

  • Manages registration for acquiring a Minnesota Tax ID.

  • Offers educational workshops.

  • Provides resources for calculating sales and use tax rates.

  • Provides information about business taxes and fees.

  • Offers an e-services solution for businesses to file income returns and submit W-2s electronically.


MN Cup is a startup competition and hub to connect Minnesota’s entrepreneurial ecosystem. We support emerging entrepreneurs through events, educational programming and an annual startup competition that provides them with tools, resources and support to launch and accelerate the development of their new ventures.

How they can help:

  • MN Cup competition benefits:
    $402,000 in available seed money
    Mentorship opportunities with industry leaders
    Exclusive event access
    Business plan feedback
    Networking opportunities with potential investors
    Media exposure

  • Startups compete in one of the following divisions:
    Energy/ Clean Tech/ Water
    Food/ Ag/ Beverage
    High Tech
    Life Science/ Health IT
    Social Entrepreneurship
    Student (undergrad and graduate students)
    Youth (18 and younger)




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