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Entrepreneurs have long turned to angels and VCs to get off the ground. But government funding has been looking more attractive. (One day, government cuts. The next day, government spending. It's almost as if this federal budget thing is a bit complicated.)
SBA administrator Karen Mills says the agency’s SBIC program set a record for the third year in a row, awarding nearly $3B to privately owned and managed investment firms in fiscal-year '12. It marks a 14% increase over last year and an 85% bump over 2010. The fiscal-year '12 figures are the highest-single volume in the 54-year history of the SBA's program. She says the agency has made it easier and faster for investors to apply. Firms in the SBIC program use a combo of these funds and private sources to then make equity and mezzanine capital investments in small businesses. The most recent MoneyTree report tracking quarterly VC investments also shows entrepreneurs turning to Virginia’s CIT funds and Maryland’s TEDCO program for funding.