Empire State Development has named the Thomas R. Beecher Jr. Innovation Center on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus a state certified incubator, a designation that includes funding of up to $625,000 over five years to support local entrepreneurs.
The Innovation Center at 640 Ellicott St. now joins the state's network of regional hotspots and certified business incubators. The designation and funding, $125,000 per year over five years, are part of the governor's Regional Economic Development Councils.
The Innovation Center opened in 2010 and is one of three locations, and additional properties, where the Medical Campus organization serves more than 120 companies and startups.
The Medical Campus will use the Empire State Development funding to expand its business development programming at the Innovation Center, starting with the launch of the i4 Studio, an idea lab that teaches how to apply creative thinking in the entrepreneurial process. Additional money will support the development of product prototypes and helping company founders connect with investors.