We support fishermen, artists, makers, small businesses, and entrepreneurs in Maine’s coastal and island communities. 

By providing business and financial planning services, professional development opportunities, industry and marketing connections, and loans and grants, the Island Institute helps  fishermen, artists, makers, and other entrepreneurs navigate the complexities of starting and growing a business. We work closely with private, local, state, and federal business counseling resources to ensure that these entrepreneurs have access to an extensive network of industry experts, advisors, and mentors.


Download and view a PDF of the Island and Coastal Business Launchpad factsheet

We are interested in working with every type of coastal and island business. To inquire about our small business services, please contact Stephenie MacLagan. You can also subscribe to Commercial Currents, an email and blog newsletter that shares buoyant stories from Maine’s island and coastal communities about economic stability and resilience. Check out archived editions on our blog.

Sponsored by the John T. Gorman Foundation.


Microgrants for Entrepreneurship and Community Impact

We are proud to offer Microgrants for Entrepreneurship and Community Impact (MECI). These microgrants, made possible by the John T. Gorman Foundation, support small businesses that increase beneficial impacts to Maine coastal and island communities. Microgrants will be considered for participants of the Island and Coastal Business Launchpad Program who aspire to meet one or more of the Impact Indicators.

Details on MECI eligibility and Impact Indicators can be found here:

Microgrants for Entrepreneurship and Community Impact factsheet

MECI application details:

With a MECI application form, the applicant will need to justify how the grant of up to $1,500 will be used to meet one or more of the Impact Indicators.

MECI application

To discuss an application, please contact Stephenie MacLagan

Island & Coastal Innovation Fund

The Island and Coastal Innovation Fund (ICIF) supports community-focused entrepreneurs, invests in transformative business models, and purchases and reallocates assets that will ensure a diversified economy for the future of Maine’s island and coastal communities. The application process begins with a discussion outlining the Impact Indicators.

More information is available in our ICIF factsheet:  Island and Coastal Innovation Fund

To inquire about an ICIF loan application, please contact Alli Carmen.

 

Other Launchpad Services

The Island Institute connects fishermen, artists, makers, small businesses, and entrepreneurs to resources that can help improve income stability, business efficiency, and economic productivity, and allow businesses to expand and reach new markets.

To inquire about any of our services, please contact Stephenie MacLagan or other staff contacts at the links below.

Aquaculture Business Development Program

Sea Vegetable Market Expansion

Archipelago, retail store for artists & makers and Annual Artists & Makers Conference

Digital Education Workshops

Financial Planning Workshops