California’s Orange County Inland Empire SBDC Network Announces Partnerships with the University of California Irvine and Riverside to Assist Tech Entrepreneurs in SoCal

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New Partners to Offer a Suite of Services to Assist Tech Companies with Access to Capital, Talent Pools and Business Development Expertise

Orange County Inland Empire Small Business Development Center (OCIE SBDC) Network Headquarters (Fullerton, CA) – The OCIE SBDC Network hosted by California State University, Fullerton, one of the state’s principal providers of small business assistance is pleased to announce a partnership to establish two new technology-focused centers: EPIC SBDC at the University of California, Riverside and SBDC at the University of California, Irvine Applied Innovation. “SBDC Tech” will now encompass the two new centers along with the existing, award-winning accelerator, LaunchPad SBDC at Octane, to provide a suite of service offerings designed to match high-tech entrepreneurs at different stages with business development consultants, capital, talent and more.

SBDC Tech services are offered at no cost to SBDC clients through partial funding from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and other state and community funding sources. Consulting services, events and workshops are available to entrepreneurs in the community with scalable companies in the med-tech, information, lifestyle and clean tech industries. “We welcome UCI and UCR into the family of SBA-funded Resource Partners and are excited by the tremendous success that will undoubtedly come from these new technology and innovation centric SBDCs,” said Adalberto Quijada, District Director of the SBA’s Santa Ana District Office. “The SBA and CSU Fullerton’s significant financial investment into the creation of these new centers underscores our steadfast commitment to these important sectors of our region’s economy.” This strategic expansion is part of the OCIE SBDC’s vision to create dynamic tech hubs in Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino counties, which build on the existing strengths of area resources and leverage regional talent pools and capital opportunities throughout these communities. Mike Daniel, Regional Director of the OCIE SBDC Network stated, “The Orange County Inland Empire SBDC Network is excited to bring on two new tech focused centers that will accelerate the growth of our local businesses and budding entrepreneurs. Both UCI and UCR had strong proposals and we are excited to see the impact their SBDC’s will have on the community.”

About the SBDC at UCI Applied Innovation

Over the last ten years, UCI has generated $14.5 billion in UCI-connected startup funding making it an enormous economic asset to the community and the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Southern California. Through its various programs, UCI Applied Innovation assists early-stage and aspiring entrepreneurs transition technologies from the lab to the real world, attract more funding to bridge startup gaps and obtain the commercialization support from the region needed to grow. The SBDC at UCI Applied Innovation, which will be housed at the Cove at UCI, will take the role of providing entrepreneurs with support for long-term client success through access to mentors and coaches, some of which include Tech Coast Angel members and more than 400 Experts-in-Residence (EiRs). In addition, SBDC clients will have close interaction with funding sources, many of which are housed at the Cove at UCI and will have access to onsite early prototype labs. “UCI Applied Innovation acts as a driver of the regional innovation and entrepreneurial ecosystem – providing an array of services and support to innovators, entrepreneurs and small businesses to positively impact and strengthen Orange County. Hosting the SBDC at UCI Applied Innovation provides another key resource to Orange County’s business community in support of the creation of infrastructure and businesses that lead to jobs and inclusive economic growth,” said Richard Sudek, Chief Innovation Officer and Executive Director at UCI Applied Innovation. This incredible network serves as a huge advantage for local tech entrepreneurs – from sourcing talent and receiving mentoring to obtaining funding. The SBDC at UCI Applied Innovation is housed at the Cove at UCI in University Research Park at 5141 California Ave #200, Irvine, CA 92617. To make an appointment at no cost, please contact sbdctech[at]ociesbdc[dot]com

About EPIC SBDC at UCR

The University of California Riverside’s Office of Technology Partnerships (OTP) is at the center of the entrepreneurial ecosystem in the Inland Empire. Its Entrepreneurial Proof of Concept and Innovation Center (EPIC) offers a complete path-to-market platform for innovators to validate ideas, build a team, and launch a company. Its NSF I-Corps Startups for Innovators education program delivers training throughout the community and its $10M Highlander investment fund provides access to capital for regional start-ups. Additionally, UCR in partnership with the County of Riverside and the City of Riverside leads ExCITE a unique accelerator providing startups with facilities, workshops, mentoring and a supportive community. UCR’s OTP will house the new EPIC SBDC, serving Riverside County and San Bernardino County, an area of 27,000 square miles with a population of four million. The EPIC SBDC is a crucial addition to these historically underserved communities, which host mostly low-tech, low-wage businesses. By providing powerful resources to tech-focused entrepreneurs, EPIC SBDC is poised to shepherd a thriving tech industry in the Inland Empire to a new level.

Drawing on UCR’s areas of research expertise, EPIC SBDC will provide services from consultants with expertise in technology sectors including agriculture technology, biotechnology, computer science, energy storage and advanced materials. EPIC SBDC’s consultants will assist early stage tech entrepreneurs with integral aspects of business growth including: financing, marketing, strategic planning, manufacturing, engineering, research and development and intellectual property. In addition, through its SBIR Resource Center, EPIC SBDC will specialize in providing innovators and entrepreneurs with support on the development of Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) grant proposals as well as assistance through the three phases of the grant process. The EPIC SBDC at UCR brings the expertise and the infrastructure to help foster a budding technology industry in the Inland Empire as well as bring together community tech players to leverage resources in the area. “UCR is committed to the transformation of the innovation landscape in the Inland Empire,” said Dr. Rosibel Ochoa, Associate Vice Chancellor of Technology Partnerships. “Our partnership with the County of Riverside and the OCIE SBDC network is a natural, yet vital addition to EPIC’s infrastructure to support scalable business to thrive in our region.” The EPIC SBDC is located at the County of Riverside Business Center at 3403 Tenth Street, Riverside, CA 92501. To make an appointment at no cost, please contact Judy Swineford at: tp[at]ucr[dot]edu

California’s OCIE SBDC Network, headquartered at California State University, Fullerton, partners with universities, colleges, and economic development agencies to assist small businesses throughout the counties of Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino. UCR and UCI will be the newest universities to host the SBDC program in the Network, together with the five current host institutions: the County of Riverside Economic Development Agency, California State University, San Bernardino, Rancho Santiago Community College District, Octane and the Orange County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

The SBDC at UCI Applied Innovation and the EPIC SBDC at UCR are open for business, but will launch their full suite of service offerings and announce their special events during Innovation Month in April 2018. For more information about these centers and SBDC Tech, please visit SBDCTech.org.

About California’s Orange County Inland Empire SBDC Network:
The OCIE SBDC Network is funded in part by the U.S. Small Business Administration and other private sector funds to offer no cost business consulting and training to current business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs throughout the counties of Orange, San Bernardino and Riverside. The program’s consultants include current and former business owners who assist clients with: their startup launch, funding, customer attraction and retention, product commercialization and more. In 2017, the OCIE SBDC Network helped its clients obtain over $326 million in debt and equity funding, making it the #1 ranking SBDC among over 1,000 locations in the nation for access to capital. The OCIE SBDC Network is hosted by California State University, Fullerton's Mihaylo College of Business and Economics. For additional information visit us at ociesmallbusiness.org

All opinions, conclusions, and/or recommendations expressed herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the SBA. All programs are extended to the public on a nondiscriminatory basis.

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Mike Daniel
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