Businesses need to meet these criteria to participate in the Angel Tax Credit program:
Be headquartered in Minnesota
Have a minimum of 51% of employees, 51% of payroll, and 51% of the value of current service contracts performed in Minnesota
Have fewer than 25 employees. No minimum number of employees is required
Pay employees annual wages of at least 175% of poverty level for a family of four, which for 2022 is $48,563 per year or $23.35 per hour. Does not apply to business' executives, officers, board members, 20%-plus owners
Pay interns 175% of federal minimum wage ($12.69 per hour)
Not have been in operation for more than 10 years (20 years if related to medical devices or pharmaceuticals requiring FDA approval)
Not have been disqualified from investment under Minn. Stat. 80 A.50 (b)(3), the Small Corporation Offering Registration disqualifications
Not have issued securities that are traded on a public exchanges, or begin trading (or have a liquidation event) within 180 days after a qualified investment
Not previously have received private equity investments of more than $4 million
Not have generated more than $4 million in investments that have received an Angel Tax Credit. The Angel Tax Credit is capped at $1 million per business
Be certified by DEED before investment is made. The non-refundable certification filing fee is $150
Technological Innovation Qualification
In addition, qualifying businesses need to be engaged in -- or be committed to engage in -- technological innovation in Minnesota. The primary business activity must include one or more of the following:
Using proprietary technology to add value to a product, process or service in a qualified high-technology field
Researching or developing a proprietary product, process, or service in a qualified high-technology field
Researching, developing, or producing a new proprietary technology for use in the fields of: agriculture, tourism, forestry, mining, manufacturing, or transportation
Researching or developing a proprietary product, process or service in the fields of agriculture, tourism, forestry, mining, manufacturing, or transportation (no technology component required)
Definitions of Proprietary Technology and Qualified High-Tech Fields
Proprietary Technology refers to technical innovations that are unique and legally owned or licensed by a business, including innovations that are patented, patent pending, a subject of trade secrets, or copyrighted.
Qualified high-technology fields include, aerospace, agricultural processing, renewable energy, energy efficiency and conservation, environmental engineering, food technology, cellulosic ethanol, information technology, materials science technology, nanotechnology, telecommunications, biotechnology, medical devices, pharmaceuticals, diagnostics, biologicals, chemistry, veterinary science, or similar.
Excluded Businesses and Professional Services
These types of businesses that may not participate in the Angel Tax Credit program:
Real estate development
Banking and lending
Lobbying and political consulting
Information technology consulting
Wholesale and retail trade
Leisure and hospitality
Ethanol from corn
Certain professional services firms are also excluded from participating, including:
Before you start, read the Business Application Guide to ensure that you have the information and uploadable files needed. Warning: the system will time out after 20 minutes and you will lose everything you have entered if you have not completed the entire application.
Complete the online Business Certification Application and pay the $150 nonrefundable filing fee online. If you do not pay online when prompted, immediately after submission of the application, you cannot go back later and make a payment online. You will be required to send us a check. Sending us a check to pay your certification fee will significantly increase the time it takes to process your application.
Here's what happens next:
If we need additional information, we will contact you; otherwise we will send you a certification approval or denial email within 30 days (often in about two weeks).
Upon certification, your business name, business type, and contact information will be posted on our website. All other information you submit is non-public data.
Authorized persons acting on behalf of a business who wish to discuss a business certification application with us should submit a Power of Attorney form.
An investor or fund will be notified to and will complete their portion of the Credit Allocation Application online.
We will send the investor or fund and business a credit allocation approval email within 15 days (often in about one week).
Only investments made after the date of the credit allocation approval email qualify for the credit.
Upon approval, the proposed investment transaction needs to be completed within 60 days, or by December 31, whichever is sooner.
Businesses are encouraged to submit a proposed convertible note or simple agreement for future equity (SAFE) to DEED for review before the investment is made to ensure the note or SAFE's clauses regarding mandatory conversion and 180 day non-conversion requirements falls within the program's requirements.
Step Three: PROOF OF INVESTMENT
Within 15 days of the investment transaction, the business submits a Proof of Investment online along with providing the following documentation:
A copy of the underlying transaction document (e.g., an executed subscription agreement).
A copy of the investor's or fund's check made out to the business, or a copy of the wire transfer:
A copy of the check serves as evidence that the certified investor or fund made the investment. If it does not, you must provide documentation showing a clear audit trail from the certified investor or fund to the business.
A wire transfer needs to show the certified investor or fund as the originator and the certified business as the beneficiary.
A copy of the business' bank deposit receipt (not a deposit slip) with the business' name and account number showing the deposit(s) being made:
A bank deposit receipt needs to show the certified business as the depositor, with business name and account number. If it does not, include a bank statement with the business' name and account number.
If an escrow account is used, submit documentation showing both the deposit into escrow and the transfer from escrow into the business' account (note: the latter is considered the date of investment).
We will send the investor or fund and the business a proof of investment approval email after processing the submission.
Step Four: ANNUAL REPORT
Review the Business Annual Report Guide to ensure that you have all the information you will need because the system will time out after 20 minutes and you will lose everything you have entered if you have not completed the entire report.
These loans and grants may be available to Angel Tax Credit Program participants:
Agriculture Utilization Research Institute (AURI)
AURI provides confidential technical and commercialization assistance to Minnesota businesses at reduced rates through its partnership with the MN legislature. Project rates are tiered and based on annual gross sales with beginning companies receiving an 80% reduction in project rates.
Launch Minnesota is a new statewide collaborative effort to accelerate the growth of startups and amplify Minnesota as a national leader in innovation. The program offers three types of business/entrepreneur grants: Business Operation Expenses, Housing-Childcare Expenses, and SBIR-STTR Phase 2 Grants.
Minnesota Technical Assistance Program
The Minnesota Technical Assistance Program helps Minnesota businesses develop and implement industry-tailored solutions that reduce waste, increase energy efficiency and prevent pollution, all with an eye toward improving public health and the environment.
The federal government's Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Programs help fund technological innovations with commercial potential. MNSBIR supports Minnesota businesses seeking funding through these programs. Contact Pat Dillon, 952-230-4540, for assistance.
STEM Intern Grants
SciTechsperience provides grants-in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines-of 50% of intern's wages up to $2,500.
The Minnesota Angel Tax Credit Program does not provide match-making services between entrepreneurs and investors, but you may wish to engage these resources: