Weekly Policy Blog: Grants and Tax Credits Support Colorado’s Advanced Industries 

Two of the Capital + Growth programs supporting efforts to position Colorado as America’s epicenter for talent, investors, and life sciences-centric companies looking to start, relocate, or expand in our state are the Advanced Industries Accelerator Grant Programs and the Advanced Industries Investment Tax Credit. Since inception, Colorado Bioscience Association (CBSA) has consistently led the reauthorization and expansion of both of these critical programs with our lobbying team at Colorado Legislative Strategies and our partners at the Colorado Office of Economic Development & International Trade (OEDIT) and the Colorado Cleantech Industries Association

Colorado’s advanced industries—which include advanced manufacturing, aerospace, bioscience, electronics, energy and natural resources (including cleantech), infrastructure engineering, and technology and information—play a vital role in the state’s economic growth and stability. They are research and development (R&D) and engineering-intensive companies, contributing to the state’s thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem. They account for close to 30% of wage earnings, almost 30% of total sales revenue, and around 35% of the state’s total exports. 

The Advanced Industries Accelerator Grant Programs

The Advanced Industries Accelerator Grant Programs, created in 2013 and run by OEDIT, is a critical source of non-dilutive funding for Colorado early-stage life sciences companies and organizations. It demonstrates a significant return on investment, delivering value back to the state through company creation and high-paying jobs. 

In 2023, the state awarded more than $9 million in Advanced Industries Accelerator Grants to 55 Colorado life sciences companies and university researchers. The success metrics since program inception across all advanced industries include: 

  • 830 Awards 
  • $151 Million Awarded 
  • 4,423 New Jobs Created 
  • 4,527 Jobs Retained 
  • 124 New Companies Created 
  • 624 Patents Filed 
  • $2.9 Billion Follow-On Capital 

In 2023, CBSA proudly led the advocacy efforts to reauthorize the Advanced Industries Accelerator Grant Programs through SB23-066, working with our advanced industries partners and OEDIT. In 2024, CBSA worked with legislators to ensure the passage of HB24-1396, General Fund Transfer to Advanced Industries Programs, which will extend full funding for the grant programs through 2034. Thank you to Joint Budget Committee members Representative Shannon Bird, Representative Rick Taggart, Senator Jeff Bridges, and Senator Barbara Kirkmeyer for sponsoring HB24-1396, which passed third reading in the House on April 1 and passed third reading in the Senate on April 5. 

You can read more about success stories from the grant programs in CBSA’s 2023-2024 Bioscience Colorado magazine. CBSA is proud to support this vital source of funding for innovation-focused startups. 

The Advanced Industries Investment Tax Credit 

The Advanced Industries Investment Tax Credit is another tool that supports the incredible breakthroughs driving Colorado’s innovation economy. The program is critical to our life sciences community because it generates new investment in growth companies working to save and change lives around the world. Since program inception in 2009, the tax credit has benefitted 103 life sciences companies in our ecosystem that were able to access almost $9 million in capital. 

In 2022, the legislature voted to reauthorize the Advanced Industries Tax Credit Program (HB22-1149) and increase the funds available by433% from $750,000 to $4 million annually. CBSA worked tirelessly with our partners at OEDIT and the Colorado Cleantech Industries Association to educate legislators on the importance of the program and secure the expansion on behalf of our state’s designated advanced industries. 

Tax credits are currently available. Learn how to begin leveraging the benefits of this program to bring in more funding to support your important health innovation!   

Investment for the Future 

With the second most educated population and the nation’s third highest concentration of high-tech employees, Colorado receives the fifth-highest amount of venture capital dollars as a percent of State GDP and the sixth highest concentration of Small Business Innovation Research grants. With continued state investment, Colorado is on its way to becoming a national and global leader in R&D-intensive innovation. 

Categories: CBSA News