BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — On Tuesday, Governor Cuomo announced the official launch of the University of Buffalo's Innovation Hub. It's designed as a place where innovators can connect with the resources they need to create new businesses or development advances in the Buffalo area.
The Hub is funded through a $32 million Empire State Development grant commitment from New York State. It supports innovation at UB and its leading researching partners, including Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center, The Jacobs Institute, Hauptmann-Woodward Medical Research Institute and Kaleida Health.
"Western New York's world-class academic institutions, like the University at Buffalo, are proven catalysts in the development of dynamic life science and technology hubs across the state," Governor Cuomo said. "Through strategic investments and local partnerships, this Innovation Hub will bring together the very best and brightest in the tech industry, growing the region's innovation economy for generations to come."
The Innovation Hub will help students and faculty researchers take their ideas from the lab to the marketplace. UB and its partners collectively bring more than $412 million in annual research outflows, 30,000 students and more than 3,000 faculty members. Students and researchers are focused on making new discoveries and advances in medical device technologies, healthcare delivery, software applications, and more innovative developments.
During the launch event, updates to the Innovation Hub were shared focusing on three key areas:
- The planning, design and renovation of UB's New York State Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences into incubation and entrepreneur support space is underway and expected to open in early 2020. The space, which will be a designated START-UP NY-eligible location, will be made available to companies affiliated with UB and partner organizations. The university will also utilize various portions of the facility for entrepreneur support programs, events, education and related services.
- Initial investments through the Innovation Hub's $13.5 million fund have commenced with a focus on fueling proof-of-concept opportunities and pre-seed/seed growth. As a result, seven proof of concept accelerator fund awardees have been selected, and the fund is expected to ramp up activity later this year, with additional funding announcements expected soon.
- Outreach engagement and support programming to best serve and guide founders and startups through the various phases of development is underway. This outreach, curriculum and programming is being introduced and implemented.