Inside Rensselaer
* Rensselaer Incubator Program Develops Global Partnership in France
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Entrepreneurs from the Montpelier Agglomeration Business Innovation Centre met with Rensselear staff in June.
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Rensselaer Incubator Program Develops Global Partnership in France
In an effort to continue building on Rensselaer’s history of fostering innovation and moving ideas from the lab to the global marketplace, the Incubator Program at Rensselaer hosted a delegation of 11 entrepreneurs from the Montpellier Agglomeration Business Innovation Centre, an incubator program located in the south of France.

As part of a three-day tour of the Capital Region June 23-25, the companies, ranging from software to biotechnology firms, met with members of the Rensselaer community, local and state officials, and business executives to discuss potential research and development collaborations. The companies also participated in the Venture BPlan series, a monthly venture capital forum sponsored by Rensselaer and the Center for Economic Growth, an Albany-based regional economic development group.

“Looking ahead, rapid technological change and an emerging global marketplace present continuing opportunities for scientific and technological entrepreneurship,” said Michael Tentnowski, director of the Incubator Program. “As a place devoted exclusively to giving life to new ideas, the Incubator acts as a ‘living laboratory’ where ideas generated in classrooms, research centers, and beyond can be tested and applied in real-world environments.”

Last year, Rensselaer signed an agreement with the Montpellier program. The agreement gives member companies of each incubator access to resources related to business services, including infrastructure-based support, mentoring, business development, fund-raising events, and networking opportunities within the Capital Region and Europe. It’s the first agreement of its kind for the Rensselaer incubator program, which has had an increasingly international focus under Tentnowski’s direction since he joined Rensselaer in October 2005.

Today, more than 40 companies are part of the program with approximately 17 housed at the Incubator on campus, several of them having expanded their office space, and the remaining affiliated companies located throughout the Capital Region, the United States, Canada, Denmark, Brazil, India, and France.

Tentnowski noted that future plans for the Incubator include being designated as an International Soft Landing Zone through the National Business Incubation Association, collaborating with other Rensselaer schools and departments to foster entrepreneurship within academic settings, collaborating with downstate facilities for international incubation with access to New York city and other strategic markets, and building relationships to support initiatives aimed at international incubation and emerging opportunities in the global economy.
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Inside Rensselaer
Volume 2, Number 12, August 8, 2008
©2008 Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
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