CTNext Identifies Partnerships for the New Year

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Partners help facilitate growth and opportunities for entrepreneurs throughout the state

These partnerships will strengthen and support the Connecticut ecosystem of small business and entrepreneurial communities.

CTNext, Connecticut’s innovation ecosystem managed by Connecticut Innovations, today announced the first round of CTNext partner awards for 2015. The goal of the partners is to provide entrepreneurs in Connecticut with tools to help grow companies, jobs and revenues.

CTNext has awarded new partnerships to the following Connecticut resources:

  •     MakeHartford of Hartford
  •     The Refinery of Westport

Additionally, CTNext renewed contracts with the following five partners, who were involved in the previous year of the program.

  •     B:Hive Bridgeport of Bridgeport
  •     Business Council of Fairfield County of Stamford
  •     Connecticut Invention Convention of Hartford
  •     CURE/Bioscience Clubhouse of New Haven
  •     reSET of Hartford

“These partnerships will strengthen and support the Connecticut ecosystem of small business and entrepreneurial communities,” said Glendowlyn Thames, director of Small Business Innovation (SBI) and CTNext. “We’ve seen tremendous success since establishing our partner program last year, and as we move into the third year of CTNext, we are looking to continue identifying partnerships that advance the goals of the program.”

CTNext has committed a total of $650,000 to the new group of contract winners. To find these unique partners, CTNext conducted a formal search, which involved an initial request for information (RFI) and an invitation-only request for proposal (RFP) for candidates who met the ecosystem’s criteria. The selection advisory committee was particularly interested in projects that would have an immediate impact on the following areas:

  •     Direct support to Connecticut entrepreneurs and small companies
  •     Job creation
  •     Investment dollars/revenue generation into the state
  •     Developing and/or placing skilled talent to meet the needs of the current economy

The latest round of partners will join a robust list of resources supporting the ecosystem. They include:

  •     Danbury Hackerspace of Danbury
  •     The Grove Collaborative of New Haven
  •     Stamford Innovation Center of Stamford
  •     SECT Tech of New Haven
  •     Independent Software of New Haven
  •     SeeClickFix of New Haven
  •     UCONN Additive Manufacturing Program of Storrs
  •     UCONN Third Bridge Program of Storrs
  •     Janis Collins, Entrepreneur in Residence
  •     Eric Knight, Entrepreneur in Residence

The second round of the RFP will open on Monday, April 13, 2015. For more information, visit http://ctnext.com/partners/.

About CTNext:
CTNext is Connecticut’s innovation ecosystem, managed by Connecticut Innovations, that equips startups and entrepreneurs with guidance, resources, and networks to help accelerate their growth. The statewide network connects promising companies to mentors, collaborative work spaces, universities, vendors and suppliers, and other like-minded entrepreneurs to help facilitate the growth and scalability of their business. CTNext is staffed with engaging advisors, mentors and entrepreneurs that have demonstrated past success with the development, launch and growth of a business. The network offers seminars, training and other events that help to foster innovation and create jobs for people in Connecticut. CTNext was launched in 2012 and in its first year of operation, the network worked with more than 500 companies and advised more than 300 through its system of growth advisors.

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Kelsea Michael
CTNext
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