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Presented by JPMorgan Chase & Co.
Grant available for small to medium-sized businesses.

April 30, 2015

Chicago ranks fourth among U.S. metropolitan areas in total export volume ($66 billion in 2012), but lags behind the U.S. average in exports as a proportion of total output. JPMorgan Chase & Co. is generously funding the Metro Chicago Exports Grant Program to expand metro Chicago’s strong export base to meet rising demand in emerging markets.

Please refer to our FAQ for further questions.

Eligible small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) can apply for the Metro Chicago Exports Grant Program to help take their business to the rest of the world. The Grant Program will provide at least 50 companies with monetary awards up to $5,000 that will cover costs associated with the company’s next steps to going global.

Expenses up to $2,500 will be reimbursed 100%. Expenses over $2,500 and up to $7,500 will be reimbursed at 50%.

All eligible SMEs are encouraged to apply, but preference will be given to businesses in the following targeted industries:

  • Metals – Fabricated Metal Products
  • Equipment – Medical and Supplies
  • Machinery – Engine and Power Equipment
  • Plastics – General
  • Computers and Electronics – Precision Instruments


The Grant Program will consist of two waves:

  • Wave 1- May 31st, 2015 Submission deadline
    • June 30th companies notified of awards
  • Wave 2 – July 31st, 2015 Submission deadline
    • August 31st companies notified of awards
      Note: At least 25% of the grant money will be reserved for the second wave.

The Metro Chicago Exports Grant Program must be utilized between the date the grant is awarded through December 31st, 2015.

Firms may apply grant awards toward a service or activity they committed to prior to grant approval. However, grant funds may not be used to pay for something that took place prior to the company’s approval for grant funds.


In order to be considered for grant funding, an authorized representative of the company must certify that the applicant meets all of the following requirements:

  • Be registered to do business in one of the following seven counties: Cook, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry, or Will with a valid W-9 form listing company address
  • Meets SBA definition as a small business – under 500 employees
  • Has been in business for at least one year on the date on which application is submitted
  • Has at least three employees
  • Is operating profitably, based on domestic operations
  • A product/service manufactured in metro Chicago or made outside the region where metro Chicago will derive a significant benefit for increased international sales or investment
  • No legal liabilities which inhibit performance of grant/exporting


  • International Trade Centers - ITC
  • Office of Trade and Investment - OTI
  • U.S. Commercial Service - USDOC