Brock University has teamed up with community partners to help launch Innovate Niagara, a consortium of regional institutions designed to advance Niagara’s economy.
The initiative consolidates key community resources to create a hub for business development and support services in our region. This includes training, mentoring, networking and pairing enterprises with academic and research support.
Founding partners include Brock University, nGen (Niagara Interactive Media Generator), the Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce, the City of St. Catharines and the Regional Municipality of Niagara.
“This unified approach recognizes what we need to do in order to compete as a region in a globalized economic environment,” says Brock President Jack Lightstone. “We are headed in the right direction.”
The CEO of Innovate Niagara is Jeff Chesebrough, who was also recently named Brock’s new director of Innovation and Incubation. Chesebrough has been CEO of nGen for four years and he will continue to serve in that role.
Earlier this year, the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario) announced an investment of $843,500 to help the University establish the new BioLinc bioscience business incubator, which opens later this year in the new Cairns Family Health and Bioscience Research Complex, and to create the Innovate Niagara consortium, including an online innovation portal.
Brock’s BioLinc bioscience business incubator is Innovate Niagara’s second business incubator, joining the currently operating Generator at one facility powered by nGen.
New Innovate Niagara team member Dan Lynch will manage BioLinc, while Steve Boese will join the Innovate Niagara team as manager of the Generator at one facility located at 1 St. Paul Street in downtown St. Catharines.
Innovate Niagara will launch its open-innovation web portal in Fall 2012 to provide web-based incubation support to assist entrepreneurs and individuals from a range of business sectors, and at different stages of business maturity.