$2 million EDA grant will help local entrepreneurs, inventors


FORT COLLINS, Colorado (December 11, 2023)—UNeMed and University of Nebraska inventors and entrepreneurs will benefit from a recently announced grant award from the U.S. Economic Development Administration.

Based in Ft. Collins, Colo., Innosphere Ventures Regional Life Sciences Incubator was awarded a $2 million grant over three years as a part of the EDA’s 10th cohort of its “Build to Scale Venture Challenge” program, which was established “to support technology entrepreneurs, catalyze innovation, and fuel economic growth.”

“This award will bring significant resources to Omaha,” UNeMed president and CEO Michael Dixon, PhD, said. “It will allow us to connect our startups with other bioscience companies across the six-state region. In addition, it will spring startup and educational resources to Omaha to help new companies get started.”

Innosphere Ventures Regional Life Sciences Incubator is a consortium of state bioscience trade organizations and academics institutions from six states: Colorado, Nebraska, New Mexico, Utah, Texas and South Carolina. Nebraska’s contingent includes UNeMed, NUtech Ventures and BIO Nebraska. NUtech is UNeMed’s sister office managing technology transfer operation for Nebraska’s Lincoln and Kearney campuses.

According to an Innosphere press release:

“The three-year grant will fund the incubator’s mission of accelerating high-quality job growth, creating economic opportunity, and supporting the next generation of industry-leading companies in the life sciences sector.

“…With approximately 30 science and tech-based companies benefiting from Innosphere programs annually, Innosphere is at the forefront of organizing early-stage capital and providing critical business support to entrepreneurial startup teams within the ecosystem. The Regional Life Sciences Incubation Program will support startups that are developing or commercializing technologies, products, devices, and life-saving breakthroughs, accelerate the journey from laboratory discoveries to market, and catalyze economic growth.”

The Build to Scale Venture Challenge grant is from the Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, which is part of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA).

Partners of the Regional Life Sciences Incubation Program include Bio Nebraska, BioUtah, and the Colorado BioScience Association.

University partners across the six states include: Colorado State University, the Medical University of South Carolina, Texas Tech University, University of Colorado-Anshutz, University of Colorado-Boulder, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, University of Nebraska Medical Center, University of Nebraska at Omaha, University of New Mexico and the University of Utah.

“We extend a warm invitation to entrepreneurs, university faculty, investors, foundations, and all stakeholders who share our vision of advancing the life sciences ecosystem,” Mike Freeman, CEO of Innosphere Ventures, said in a press release. “Your involvement is crucial to the success of this endeavor. Together, we can amplify our impact, provide vital resources, and create an even more dynamic and innovative landscape. We encourage you to join us in this transformative journey as we collaborate to fuel the growth of life sciences and science-based startups and drive economic prosperity across the region.”

Comments are closed.