TechGROWTH awarded $3.7 Million

TechGROWTH Ohio Wins $3.7 Million Third Frontier AwardTechGrowth log

Becomes $40 Million Program for Southeast Ohio Startups

Athens, Ohio – Ohio University’s Third Frontier initiative, TechGROWTH Ohio, has been awarded $3.7 million by the state in a competitive funding process for venture development services.  The grant will be matched dollar for dollar by Ohio University and private organizations, allowing TechGROWTH to continue and expand these services through 2016.

Founded in 2007 by Ohio University and Ohio’s nationally recognized Third Frontier program, TechGROWTH provides intensive professional services and seed-stage investment capital to technology companies and entrepreneurs in Southeast Ohio. It has assisted more than 450 technology companies and has invested more than $5 million in 12 startup companies.  These services and investments have helped companies in Southeast Ohio generate nearly $200 million in additional economic activity, including co-investments, loans, grants, increased sales and new jobs.

“This new award from the Ohio Third Frontier validates the quality of our significant and ongoing efforts to grow the innovation economy in Southeast Ohio,” said Roderick J. McDavis, president of Ohio University.

Earlier this year, TechGROWTH opened its third seed fund with nearly $6M of new capital under management.  In addition, two affiliated groups, East Central Ohio Tech Angel Fund (ECOTAF) and Impact Angels, recently opened new angel investment funds.  The cumulative services and investment funding provided by Third Frontier, Ohio University and other organizations now totals more than $40 million.

“With new funding in place for both services and investment capital, TechGROWTH and Southeast Ohio are well-positioned for increased startup activity and economic impact in the coming years,” said Lynn Gellermann, executive director of TechGROWTH and Ohio University’s Center for Entrepreneurship.

TechGROWTH, which is led and managed by Ohio University’s Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs, has developed an expansive network of strategic partners to identify and assist aspiring new companies and entrepreneurs throughout the region. The TechGROWTH partner network includes the following organizations and service providers:  Bricker & Eckler, Crowe Horwath, EquiBrand, Kaser Enterprises, Ice Miller, NuGrowth and the Muskingum County Business Incubator (MCBI).  Additional mentoring and advisory services are provided by a number of professionals working with TechGROWTH as Entrepreneurs- and Executives-In-Residence.

“TechGROWTH’s increased capacity to support inventors and entrepreneurs through the early stages of company formation and capital attraction is a major milestone for our region,” said MCBI Executive Director and ECOTAF Member Larry Triplett.

At Ohio University, institutional collaborators include: Office of the Vice President for Research and Creativity, College of Business, Center for Entrepreneurship, Innovation Center, Technology Transfer Office and Edison Biotechnology Institute.

TechGrowth Ohio targets startup technology companies across several sectors including, but not limited to: advanced energy and environment, healthcare, information technology and advanced materials. Entrepreneurs in southeastern Ohio can visit for more information about available investment and venture development resources.

Media contact: Lynn Gellermann, 740-597-1722, Gellermann,

An Innovative Sponge?


How is a sponge is one of the show Shark Tank greatest success stories? Why? How did the re-imagination of the sponge lead to such a successful business?

Well the sponge daddy’s inventor Aaron Krause shared his eight tips with Neil Palmer at Yahoo.

  1. Start your idea from scratch
  2. Spot the upcoming trends
  3. Consider your pain points
  4. Know your customers
  5. Don’t forget the details
  6. Scale your product
  7. Find the right partner
  8. Find expansion opportunities

Check out the full article here for an explanation of each of these tips.

The scrub daddy: more than a sponge, this smiley sponge is a revolutionary cleaning device that swept the Shark Tank stage. This little guy quickly became a hit. If you’re looking for a Christmas/Hanukah/Kwanza/Winter Solstice/other gift this year, would you ever think of buying a sponge? Check out this very cool demonstration, and you might want to consider it!

Do you have any tips to fellow entrepreneurs?


Hardworking Hackers

social storm 4

The Social Storm Global Hackathon was a success. With six participants and four mentors, this team put blood, sweat, and tears into creating a worthwhile solution to this high intensity project. The teams were tasked with a social problem and given 24 hours to create a worthwhile solution. Competing with teams across the world, our students were described as “heroic” in their efforts. Working into the early morning, this team produced a video, business canvas, and research deliverables within this very short timespan. As we await the results, we can commend these students for their hard work and dedication to this event that connects students across the globe in an effort to solve humanity’s social issues.


Jerry Lovingood

Minyuan Gao

Daniel Williams

Lijie Xia

Jonathan Miller

Lorene Bentz



John Glazer

Shmuel Roth

Lauren McCullough

Faith Knutsen


Special thanks to Nathaniel Berger / CREATE_space

Have a great idea? You could win a trip to Las Vegas!

IFA Global Comp

The International Franchise Association (IFA) Educational Foundation is looking to the next generation of entrepreneurial leaders. They are accepting applications until December 1, 2014 so apply here!

What are they looking for?

  • Big entrepreneurial ideas
  • Ways to improve big brands and businesses
  • Dreams of your own business

The requirements are simple, just a brief application that includes an idea or a new franchise concept or an innovation for an existing company/brand. These ideas can be submitted as an executive summary, Powerpoint, or Prezi, and/or a 2-3 Youtube video.

What do I win?

The IFA will choose 50 winners who then receive a travel voucher to travel to the IFA Convention in Las Vegas where these students will receive a complimentary conference pass to the first NextGen in Franchising Summit. The winners will get the chance to interact with iconic brand owners and leaders in the franchise industry.

This is a great opportunity to share your amazing ideas. For more information click here, call 310-822-0261, or check out their website!