Capital Program

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 The deadline for the latest round of the Capital Program is now passed. Applications are no longer being accepted.

Program Overview

The Competitive Capital Program is designed to provide grants for capital projects that support the life sciences ecosystem in Massachusetts by enabling and supporting life sciences workforce development and training, research and development, commercialization and/or manufacturing in the Commonwealth. Applicants are academic organizations, research institutions, research hospitals, business incubators and other non-profit organizations. MLSC recognizes that investment in capital projects and infrastructure is required to create and sustain the attributes that make Massachusetts attractive to innovation clusters such as life sciences. This program is designed to help fund high potential economic development projects that promise to make a significant contribution to the state’s life sciences ecosystem.

Program to Date

To date, the MLSC has awarded or committed more than $405 million to support capital projects across the state.  This includes projects that were designated for funding in the Life Sciences Initiative, and projects funded through the MLSC’s Capital Programs.

Program Eligibility

Applicants must be a Massachusetts legally organized “not-for-profit” entity such as an academic/research institution, a hospital engaged in research, business incubator or accelerator, or other not-for-profit entity that would be eligible for capital funding from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Institutions that are exclusively health care providers and/or requests for the purchase of equipment associated with standard healthcare would not be eligible for capital funding.

Only ONE (1) application per organization will be accepted and must be signed by a senior leader of the organization (President, CEO, Executive Director, etc.).

The following entities are NOT ELIGIBLE to apply to the Capital Program:

  • For-profit companies or other for-profit entities; and
  • Municipalities or other governmental entities.

Eligible applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • Applicants must be requesting funding for capital projects to support the life sciences “infrastructure” in Massachusetts in organizations engaged in life sciences research, development, education and training, or commercialization in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts by the time of the application deadline.

Life sciences is: “advanced and applied sciences that expand the understanding of human physiology and have the potential to lead to medical advances or therapeutic applications” as defined in the Massachusetts General Laws (MGL), chapter 23I, section 2.

  • Project requests for funding from the MLSC must not exceed $5 million. Private academic institutions (2-year and 4-year colleges/universities) – that are not research institutions – are limited to $500,000 per institution for equipment purchases only.
  • Projects must be ready for funding beginning in FY17 (July 1, 2016) and completion of the project must not extend beyond FY19 (June 30, 2019). Applicants may request single or multi-year funding. Thirty-five (35) million dollars has been allocated to the 2016 program with the MLSC providing up to $7 million in FY17, up to $21 million in FY18, and up to $7 million in FY19.
  • The MLSC envisions that recipients under the Program will receive a grant amount that leverages additional funds that have been identified and raised for the proposed project. The MLSC acknowledges that the sources and amounts of additional funding will vary depending on the Applicant, the proposed project, and the availability of such funding to the Applicant. These variables will be taken into consideration by the MLSC’s Board of Directors as it makes its funding decisions. For example, a research institution engaged in finding a cure for cancer may be able to attract a greater share of philanthropic dollars than a community college focused on workforce development. Applicants that have succeeded in attracting significant additional funds will benefit during the review process.

Application and Review Process

The MLSC manages the award of capital dollars through a two-phased approach:

Phase I: Submission of a short online application, which includes a 1-page summary of the proposed project. Applications will be vetted by the MLSC’s staff for administrative completeness and the MLSC’s Capital Planning Workgroup which is comprised of members of the Board of Directors. A short list of Phase I applicants will be selected for further consideration and invited to submit a Phase II application.

Phase II: Based on Phase I review, applicants selected to move to Phase II will be notified by July 29, 2016. Only these applicants will be asked to submit a full proposal for evaluation. Phase II applications will undergo a full review by the MLSC’s Scientific Advisory Board and Capital Planning Workgroup. A group of finalists will then be asked to make presentations to the Board of Directors’ Investment Committee. Final recommendations will be brought to the full Board of Directors for approval.

NOTE: Phase II Applications will be sent via email to the institution’s representative.


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