Published April 20, 2018
UB will facilitate a $32 million investment from New York State to launch an Innovation Hub in its New York State Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences that will accelerate the growth of Western New York startups.
The Innovation Hub, part of the state's second Buffalo Billion investment, will support commercialization of technologies generated by UB, Hauptman-Woodward Medical Research Institute, Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center, Kaleida Health and the Jacobs Institute, ultimately growing private investment and jobs in Western New York.
The hub will provide incubator space to house technology startups on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus, establish a technology commercialization investment fund, and deliver mentoring and other support programs and services to guide innovators from idea to market.
It is part of the Middle Class Recovery Act announced yesterday by Gov. Andrew Cuomo at a press conference at the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at UB.
While at the Jacobs School, Cuomo also signed legislation launching the second phase of the Excelsior Scholarship Program, which increases the annual income eligibility for the program to $110,000. When fully implemented, the program will provide free tuition at New York's public universities for families making up to $125,000 a year.
The Innovation Hub project involves three main components:
President Satish K. Tripathi noted that a research university is at the center of any thriving entrepreneurship hub. “Through our extensive faculty expertise, our longstanding engagement in the community, and our established record of student and faculty entrepreneurial collaborations — in areas ranging from the life sciences and materials science to IT and sustainability — UB has created a dynamic environment where entrepreneurship can grow and flourish,” Tripathi said.
Christina Orsi, UB associate vice president for economic development, called the Innovation Hub a key component to building Western New York’s innovation economy. “When you think of the most successful startup communities from Boston to Silicon Valley to Boulder, they all have strong ties to research institutions and universities as sources of innovation,” Orsi said. “They also have early stage venture capital and connections with successful entrepreneurs and market expertise.
“The hub brings all of this together to help accelerate the number of new inventions spinning out of our institutions into startups that grow in Western New York.”