IncubateMass - FAQ


While it is required to report paid employees, both full time and part time, what about employees or founders who have been compensated with equity?

If the employee is working for the company in any capacity, even for equity, they must be reported in the employee figures. While overall employee payroll must be reported, the amount of equity being paid to employees does not.

Should applicant responses be formatted as tables like those provided, presented in narrative form, or both?

For Section A, the proposed award distribution, please use the Excel spreadsheet template provided.. There should be two distinct sections: one for Operations and Management (“Incubator Deliverables”), and one for Client Company Milestones. All other areas of the application may be addressed as the applicant chooses.

Questions regarding “Payment of Award”:

  • If awarded an IncubateMass grant, is it reimbursement after execution meaning that the incubator has to find a way to fund necessary resources beforehand?
    • Yes.
  • If the incubator needs to hire someone to add to staff, this is still true?
    • Yes. The goal of this grant is not to supply a regular employee’s compensation, but to supplement other incubator income for particular programs or initiatives. For instance, this grant would not cover a new mentoring coordinator’s salary, but it could cover the expenses of a networking event he or she puts on.
  • Will items for which a quote has been provided be pre-funded based on the quote?
    • No expenses are pre-funded by this grant. The structure of these contracts is such that MassCEC only issues payment upon receipt and confirmation of all deliverables for a given milestone. For instance, payment for infrastructure upgrades must be covered up front by the incubator, and MassCEC will pay the contracted amount for that milestone upon completion of the upgrade.The quotes provided in the proposal inform MassCEC’s understanding of the costs associated with running the facilities and, while they may inform milestone payments set up during contracting, MassCEC will not reimburse the exact price of the equipment, but will pay the contracted milestone payment amount determined at contracting between MassCEC and the incubator.

Please explain the budget breakdown and what this means for the funding level for which we are eligible.

Funds requested may be no more than 20 % of an incubator’s total budget in any given year.

If an incubator has a budget of $100K and receives an additional $20K in funding from IncubateMass, a maximum of only $16K of that $20K from IncubateMass funding could be used for “Incubator Deliverables” such as facility upgrades, support for funding diversification, etc. At least $4K must be tied to Client Company Milestones.

In regard to relationships with entities and partners (ex: universities, institutes, municipalities, etc.) are legal documents (ex: memoranda of understanding, partnership agreements, etc.) required? May partners be other public or even private entities?

Although MOUs and formal agreements are preferred, letters of support would be fine at the point of application. If awarded, an incubator milestone may be to execute a formal partnership to provide XYZ benefits to the incubator and its residents. Partners may be non-university public or private entities as well.

How should an Incubator report data when there is more than one year to show?

Please use the template provided (Excel) to submit all required data on client companies.

Use one tab on the provided template to show what each company’s metrics were in Q3 2014, and a second tab to show the metrics for September 2015.

Data reported should be cumulative from client companies’ entrance to the incubator through the present (please note exit dates, where applicable). For example, when first reporting on a company that has raised $50,000 in grants, under the Grants/Awards column enter “50,000.” When submitting data the following quarter, if the company has since received an additional $5,000 award, under the Grants/Awards section the number you should enter would be “55,000.”

If the incubator is already working with and reporting data to MassCEC, can the incubator use that data in the application for their Q3 2015 reporting?