Metro Chicago Exports 2017 Grant Program is closed.

The application process for Metro Chicago Exports 2017 Grant Program is closed.

The 2017 Grant Program will award up to $5,000 to small and medium-sized companies in the seven-county region to implement an export plan. The grant will reimburse 50% of eligible expenses related to the plan.

Businesses located in Cook, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry and Will counties that are existing exporters with fewer than 500 employees are encouraged to apply.

The application process involves the online submission of a grant application. Applicants may save the form and complete in more than one sitting. Past Grant Program award recipients are eligible to re-apply and their evaluation will include their prior performance in the grant program.

If potential barriers to maximizing export potential are identified during the Grant Application, companies may be referred to export service providers to assist them in formulating international export plans.

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

  • 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 the Small Business Administration’s definition of a small business – under 500 employees
  • Been in business for at least one year from the date the application is submitted
  • Operating profitably, based on domestic operations
  • Provides a product/service manufactured in metro Chicago or made outside the region from which metro Chicago will derive a significant benefit from increased international sales or investment
  • No legal liabilities which inhibit performance of grant/exporting
  • Must be willing to share results from use of grant funds in the form of survey feedback or success stories.


Small and medium-sized companies that provide either goods or services are eligible to apply to the Metro Chicago Exports 2017 Grant Program. No preference will be given based on target export market, specific industry sector or to company location within the seven-county region.

For more information, please download our Frequently Asked Questions.