The following organizations were selected as recipients of the 2013 Excellence in TBED Awards. These organizations have demonstrated exceptional achievement in addressing the elements that have been found in successful technology-based economies. They are:
Utah Science Technology and Research Initiative (USTAR) — Expanding the Research Capacity Category
USTAR is effectively strengthening Utah’s knowledge economy through strategic investments in higher education and thoughtful collaboration between state government and leaders in the business community and universities. The initiative focuses on the recruitment of top-level researchers, state-of-the-art interdisciplinary R&D facilities and deployment of statewide commercialization teams to create high-wage jobs and bolster the innovation infrastructure of Utah. USTAR’s combination of facilities, human capital and entrepreneurial nature are essential to its success. In its first seven years, USTAR has seen a $488 million return on investment in the form of Industry Sponsored Research and research grants. USTAR’s researchers have submitted more than 390 disclosures, filed 280 patents and have 72 active licenses and projects.
Innovation Center of the Rockies (ICR) — Commercializing Research Category
The Innovation Center of the Rockies (ICR) has developed a low-cost, effective model to commercializing university technology and creating new companies. With firm footing in the Colorado entrepreneurial community, ICR draws from a pool of more than 1,500 volunteer advisors to provide expert matching for incubator clients in developing commercialization strategies for university inventions and help established companies overcome critical obstacles. A replicable model and formally organized network of business decision makers, entrepreneurs and mentors distinguish the program as a leader in the field. Efforts to commercialize research have resulted in the creation of 498 jobs since 2006, and ICR clients have attracted nearly $91 million in new capital.
BioGenerator — Building Entrepreneurial Capacity Category
The BioGenerator builds investable, sustainable bioscience companies in the St. Louis region by providing business and technical advice and support, early stage capital, and shared lab space and equipment. BioGenerator is the venture development organization of BioSTL, a regional collaboration to build St. Louis’ bioscience ecosystem. For 10 years, BioGenerator has helped reinvent St. Louis’ economy through startup activity. It has continuously improved its programs by enhancing entrepreneurial support and cultivating new private capital sources. To date, BioGenerator has funded 40 bioscience startups and leveraged $140 million in additional financing from a $5.5 million nonprofit investment — a ratio that exceeds 25:1. Additionally, the BioGenerator Accelerator Labs, a pre-incubator facility, is a unique model for creating capital efficient companies.
UND Center for Innovation Foundation — Increasing Access to Capital Category
As one of the first university-affiliated entrepreneur outreach centers in the nation, the University of North Dakota (UND) Center for Innovation Foundation has created a vibrant and diverse capital initiative tailored to the unique needs of a rural economy. With a strong continuum of programs that bring together state tax incentives, two federal programs (SBIR, EB-5), angel investors, and student-managed venture funds, the UND Center for Innovation helps technology-based entrepreneurs diversify the state’s economy and create jobs. This initiative has successfully launched nine angel investment funds and six more are under development. In five years, those nine funds have invested $24.3 million in 38 ventures.
Massachusetts Life Sciences Center — Improving Competitiveness of Existing Industries
The Massachusetts Life Sciences Center (MLSC) is fulfilling the vision of the state’s 10-year, $1 billion Life Sciences Initiative by funding translational life sciences research, making financial investments in promising companies and new technologies, ensuring next-generation life sciences workers have skills that are well-aligned with industry needs, and building partnerships between sectors of the local and international life sciences communities. Sustained political support and leveraging existing strengths of the region are key elements to the MLSC’s success. Since 2008, the MLSC has directly invested or committed more than $467 million and leveraged more than $1 billion in third-party investment — creating a public-private investment fund of more than $1.6 billion for the state’s life sciences ecosystem.
ASU Entrepreneurship & Innovation Group — Most Promising TBED Initiative Category
ASU’s Entrepreneurship & Innovation Group (EIG) has developed four innovative programs designed to bring together the Greater Phoenix entrepreneurial ecosystem, attract new partners, and create thriving startups inside and outside the university. EIG’s creative use of existing resources and strong public and private sector support serves as a promising model for entrepreneurial and technology commercialization initiatives throughout the country. A technology transfer accelerator, a co-working network embedded in the public library system, and a startup school taught by practitioners are among the programs offered by EIG.
Five organizations were named winners of SSTI’s 2014 Excellence in TBED award, serving as national models for states and regions investing in science, technology and innovation to grow their economies and create high-paying jobs.
This year’s winners were able to bring together diverse groups of partners to collectively achieve a vision of regional prosperity, said Dan Berglund, SSTI president and CEO. This group, along with past winners, exhibits that excellence in TBED can make a significant impact on regional economies.
The following initiatives were named 2014 recipients of SSTI’s Excellence in TBED award:
University of Florida Sid Martin Biotechnology Incubator — Commercializing Research
Built in 1995, University of Florida’s Sid Martin Biotechnology Incubator (SMBI) is one of the country’s first bio-business incubators. The 40,000-square-foot bioscience complex was created with the goal of commercializing UF technologies around the life sciences and creating a local bioscience industry in the semi-rural town of Alachua, FL. Its companies and graduates have attracted more than $1.2 billion in equity investment, contracts, grants, and M&A activity. SMBI companies have created more than 2,000 high-wage jobs and have had an economic impact of well over $100 million per year in Alachua County.
Innovation Works: AlphaLab Startup Accelerator Program — Building Entrepreneurial Capacity
Launched in 2008, AlphaLab is an industry-leading startup accelerator developed and managed by Innovation Works, a technology-based economic development organization and the seventh-most-active early stage investor in the United States. The program provides companies with a $25,000 investment as well as access to AlphaLab’s extensive mentor network and free and discounted professional services. In 2013, Innovation Works launched AlphaLab Gear, a nonprofit hardware accelerator program, a 40-week program and up to a $50,000 investment for hardware startups. Combined, the two AlphaLab programs have invested over $2.17 million in 80 startups that have attracted more than $87 million in follow-on funding that already have created more than 200 high-skilled jobs throughout the Pittsburgh region.
CincyTech — Increasing Access to Capital
CincyTech is a venture development organization whose mission is to drive talent and capital into promising startup companies in Southwest Ohio. Supported by grants from the Ohio Third Frontier, with matching grants from corporations, foundations, and local governments, CincyTech has $30 million under management across three for-profit seed funds and one follow-on fund. Since investment began in 2007, CincyTech has analyzed more than 3,000 inquiries, assisted 319 companies and invested in 52 companies, helping portfolio companies raise another $405 million in follow-on funding. The companies have generated $99 million in revenues and currently employ 609 people.
BioCrossroads — Improving Competitiveness of Existing Industries
BioCrossroads is Indiana’s initiative to help grow the life sciences, a public-private collaboration that supports the region’s research and corporate strengths while encouraging new business development. Over the past 12 years, BioCrossroads has served as a catalyst for growth within Indiana’s life sciences industry, raising more than $300 million in funding, organizing several venture capital and seed stage funds, and attracting $277 million in additional venture capital for Indiana life sciences companies. BioCrossroads has also helped to attract more than 3,000 new life sciences jobs and has provided support to more than 300 startup companies. Most of the funding that BioCrossroads has raised for multiple life sciences opportunities has come from foundation grants, venture capital, and industry investment, with less than 3 percent coming from state investment.
Illinois Science & Technology Coalition: Corporate-Startup Challenge — Most Innovative
The Illinois Corporate-Startup Challenge is a bridge between the major corporations that serve as the backbone of Illinois’ economy and the startup businesses expected to power it through the 21st century. Launched in 2013 with a pilot group of five corporations, the Illinois Corporate-Startup Challenge assembles a class of Fortune 1000 corporations on a semiannual basis and pairs them with startup companies that address their innovation needs through a highly curated matchmaking process. Led by the Illinois Innovation Council, the Illinois Corporate-Startup Challenge is administered by the Illinois Science & Technology Coalition with the pilot program funded by a grant from the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity. The vision of the program is to recruit 30 Illinois Fortune 1000 corporations to participate in the program over three years and self-fund through corporate sponsorship.
Expanding the Research Capacity
- The Utah Science Technology and Research Initiative (USTAR), 2013
- The Maryland Stem Cell Research Fund, 2012
- Kentucky’s Bucks for Brains Endowment Match Program, 2011
- Maine Technology Asset Fund, 2010
- James & Esther King Biomedical Research Program, 2009
- Georgia Research Alliance Eminent Scholars®, 2007
- University of Florida Sid Martin Biotechnology Incubator, 2014
- Innovation Center of the Rockies, 2013
- Oregon Nanoscience and Microtechnologies Institute (ONAMI), 2012
- ACTiVATE®, 2011
- Washington Technology Center Research & Technology Development Program, 2009
- Maryland Technology Transfer Fund, 2008
- Georgia Research Alliance VentureLab, 2007
Building Entrepreneurial Capacity
- Innovation Works – AlphaLab Startup Accelerator Program, 2014
- BioGenerator and BioSTL, 2013
- Ben Franklin TechVentures®, 2012
- CONNECT, 2011
- JumpStart Inc., 2010
- TechColumbus TechStart Program, 2009
- SC Launch, 2008
- Technology 2020, 2007
Increasing Access to Capital
- CincyTech, 2014
- UND Center for Innovation Foundation, 2013
- TechColumbus, 2012
- BioEnterprise, 2011
- i2E, Inc. Oklahoma’s Proof-of-Concept Fund, 2010
- JumpStart Inc., 2009
- Innovation Works Seed Fund, 2008
- Connecticut Innovations Eli Whitney Fund, 2007
Improving Competitiveness of Existing Industries
- BioCrossroads, 2014
- Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, 2013
- Clemson University International Center for Automotive Research, 2012
- Center for Integrated Manufacturing Studies at Rochester Institute of Technology, 2011
- Florida High Tech Corridor Council Matching Grants Research Program, 2010
- Innovation Works Innovation Adoption Grant Fund, 2009
- Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology, Inc. Manufacturing Supply Chain Integration, 2008
- The Maryland Industrial Partnerships Program, 2007
Enhancing the Science & Technology Workforce Category
- Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology, Inc. Education Initiative, 2009
- Virginia Council on Advanced Technology Skills, 2007
Most Promising TBED Initiative