TEDCO announced at the annual Entrepreneur Expo on Oct. 25 that it would award $125,000 to each of the six teams, which had emerged from a field of 51 applicants.
Collaborative teams from around the state had accepted the incubation challenge, which the quasi-public entity opened in June with a promise to give $300,000 to at least two teams. The challenge: come up with innovative ways that incubators can encourage startups in Maryland.
After naming six finalists on Oct. 23, TEDCO delighted the competitors and the tech-transfer crowd at the Expo on Oct. 25 by funding all six teams. John Wasilisin, president of TEDCO, said its board members moved to fatten the prize to a total of $750,000 because the proposals were so strong.
The three teams with UMB input are: TrajectoryNext, Anchor Ventures, and a group led by Maryland Technology Enterprise Institute (MTECH).
A faculty member of UMB’s Graduate School, Jenny Owens, ScD, MS, presented at the Expo on behalf of TrajectoryNext along with two other collaborators: Jen Meyer, chief executive officer of BetaMore; and Meghan Wahler, FastForward program manager at Johns Hopkins Technology Ventures.
This new post-accelerator program will offer support and assistance to startups as they work to build up their teams and acquire new customers. UMB, Betamore, and FastForward, are among the partners.
The University System of Maryland, Johns Hopkins Technology Ventures, and UM Ventures are partners in another winning team, Anchor Ventures, which proposes a monthly forum to assist entrepreneurs. UM Ventures is a joint initiative of University of Maryland Strategic Partnership: MPowering the State, bringing UMB and University of Maryland, College Park (UMCP) together to commercialize discoveries.
The third winner with UMB ties is the MTECH-led group, which expects to create a program to help startups connect with corporations for partnerships. The Francis King Carey School of Law’s Maryland Intellectual Property Legal Resource Center, which has offices in Baltimore and at UMCP, is a partner along with Bowie Business Innovation Center, Prince George’s Community College, Inncuvate Consulting, LLC, of Largo, Md., and Northrop Grumman.
The other finalists are the Eastern Shore Entrepreneurship Center’s F³ Tech Program; LaunchPort Accelerator, a program based in Baltimore’s Port Covington that focuses on medical device startups and is being launched by MVR Co. and the Quinn Group; and FounderTrac, a pre-pipeline incubator that piloted in Annapolis this year. The latter is a collaboration between Launch! Annapolis, MCVC Partners, Annapolis Ventures, and Maryland Tech Council.