LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 14, 2021) — Two innovation packages led by the University of Kentucky are receiving part of the U.S. Small Business Administration’s (SBA) $5.4 million in prizes to help inclusive entrepreneurship within the innovation ecosystem.
The SBA recently announced winners for its Growth Accelerator Fund Competition (GAFC) and Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Catalyst competitors, a brand new element geared toward spurring funding in underrepresented communities inside the innovation financial system at scale.
Kentucky Commercialization Ventures (KCV), a program co-founded by UK’s Office of Technology Commercialization (OTC) and led in partnership with Kentucky Science and Technology Corporation (KSTC), the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development and the University of Louisville, was considered one of 84 winners of the GAFC, receiving $50,000 to help this system’s work to translate improvements, analysis findings and mental property into market-ready merchandise, companies and job-creating startups from all the public establishments of upper schooling in Kentucky that don’t have devoted commercialization assets.
XLerator Network (XLN), OTC’s Southeast IDeA Hub funded by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences, was considered one of eight winners of the SBIR Catalyst competitors, receiving $150,000. XLN, led by Louisville-based accelerator Xlerate Health and UK because the lead educational establishment, is a Regional Technology Transfer Accelerator Hub connecting biomedical researchers and directors at 25 universities within the Southeast with assets to commercialize improvements into merchandise that enhance human well being.
XLN’s award is targeted on increasing its EnRICH program, a human health-focused innovation harvesting and commercialization “pre-accelerator” program for college and pupil innovators at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) throughout the nation. EnRICH was co-founded by OTC and Xlerate Health in partnership with Jackson State University (JSU) and is led by JSU.
Taunya Phillips, director of UK’s Office of Technology Commercialization, shall be partnering with XLerate Health and JSU to execute the brand new coaching mannequin for HBCUs.
”The grant will enable the staff to make use of its collective information and insights about SBIR packages to broaden consciousness of them at HBCU campuses,” mentioned Phillips. “The instruction, coaching and mentoring will help increase the competitiveness of SBIR applications from HBCU startups. I am eager to see how our work positively impacts the number of SBIR awards from HBCUs.”
(*2*) mentioned UK’s Associate Vice President for Research, Innovation and Economic Impact Ian McClure, J.D. “Intentional efforts like these projects show our commitment to inclusive innovation, something we want to continue to make a top priority. We look forward to our collaboration with these partners to ensure open and equitable access to best practices and programming to support underrepresented innovators and first-time founders.”
SBA award rivals had been required to submit a presentation deck and a 90-second video to explain their total plan for an award, together with their work with focused entrepreneur teams, expertise with STEM/R&D and implementation plans for the prize funds. Applications had been judged by panels of specialists from the non-public and public sector with expertise in early-stage funding, entrepreneurship, educational, startups and financial growth.