Student or Learner
What does the following in red mean in the context?
Sullivan's experiment is not yet a proven success. He hasn't reached his target of $900,000 at the time of writing and even if he hits it, that figure is still only paying for a small team.
Is this saying "that figure is as little as the amount that can be given just to a small team (maybe as their salaries)"?
Yes. '...only paying for a small team' means '...only enough to pay for a small team'.