Academic Partnership Engagement Experiment (APEX) Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Technology Transfer (STTR) process navigation services involve team matchmaking and consulting. Team matchmaking entails locating and connecting potential collaborators within the APEX network. Consulting entails supporting entrepreneurial and academic researchers with the best support possible during their pursuit of Department of the Air Force SBIR/STTR funding, from pre-proposal to post-award. 

APEX is funded by the Department of the Air Force to provide SBIR/STTR process navigation services at no cost to qualifying small businesses and academia nationwide. These services activate upon solicitation pre-release but are not official instructions of the DAF. APEX process navigation services are offered as guidance, and final decisions are of a client's own discretion. APEX process navigation does not guarantee proposal or solicitation success.

The information an end user submits into our Google forms provided below is anonymized upon submission, organized, and then distributed throughout the APEX network, which consists of university and small business contacts. As introduction requests come in, APEX will make the connections according to your instructions, and then it is up to the parties involved to decide their fit. 


If you are planning on submitting an SBIR or STTR proposal in the current round and want to join a process navigation consulting cohort to receive advice on how to navigate the proposal process and get invited to select APEX briefings:

Team Matchmaking


If you want to pursue an STTR solicitation and need a required partner or you need a subcontractor with particular talents to fill a gap on an SBIR solicitation, or you want to offer your services as a potential partner or subcontractor:

APEX Process Navigation Impact

APEX Client Testimonials & Success Stories