Indian Country Program - Art Banner

STED Commission Indian Equity Fund (IEF)

All funds for this program have been awarded to participating tribal governments.  Each tribal government and/or their designee have additional specific criteria for their grant funds available to small businesses.  For additional information, contact the tribal government or area of interest to see if they have local tribal grant funds available for business assistance or by contacting our offices by phone at (406) 841-2754 or by E-mail for referral to specific tribal programs managing the STED Commission Indian Equity Fund grant. 

General guidance for eligible projects is as follows:

Eligible Activities

Tribes will follow the general guidance of the Indian Equity Fund program that is currently administered by the Montana Department of Commerce.  Grant funds are to be used to assist start-up or expanding Native American businesses in Montana including tribal enterprises.  Funds can be used for a variety of business activities usually funded by a commercial lender.  These activities may include but are not limited to:

  • Purchase of land, building and equipment.
  • Purchase of assets including furnishings, equipment and technology.
  • Selected use of working capital for business operations.A very strong case must be made to utilize funds for working capital.
  • Existing business owners must show how the funding will support growth in their business either through the development of a new product or service with the existing business strategy.

Ineligible Activities

  • Operation and reoccurring maintenance costs or expenses;
  • Financial expenses, included but not limited to interest expense, bond issuance costs, or any other debt-related costs or expenses;
  • Reimbursement for activities completed prior to application;
  • Reimbursement for activities not related to business planning;
  • Duplicative reimbursement for activities receiving funding for the same services, equipment, or improvements through any other local, state, or federal grant or funding program, except as necessary to fully fund the project; or
  • Projects whose primary development will be a casino or other gambling establishment, aquarium, zoo, golf course, or swimming pool.


Indian Country Economic Development Grant Program
Native American Collateral Support
Montana Indian Language Program
Montana Tribal Tourism


Tribal Tourism
Office of Indian Affairs
Native American Made in Montana
Using the Montana Brand

301 S. PARK AVE. | P.O. BOX 200533 | HELENA, MT 59620-0533 |  T: 406.841.2870 |  F: 406.841.2871 | TDD: 406.841.2702

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