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Sept. 26, 2014

Contact: Molly Brush
Communications Specialist
ASU Office of Knowledge Enterprise Development

Jennifer Waters
Director of Communications
Mohawk Valley EDGE


Funding will Help New York Entrepreneurs Start Companies Based on Technologies Developed at the Air Force Research Lab in Rome, New York

ROME, N.Y. – Entrepreneurs in upstate New York will have the opportunity to commercialize technologies developed by the Air Force Research Lab (AFRL) based in Rome, New York, as part of New York Furnace, a division of the Furnace Technology Transfer Accelerator.

New York Furnace, a startup accelerator that brings new technologies out of the research lab and into the marketplace, is partnering with community organizations to help entrepreneurs launch companies based on AFRL technologies.

Lead Program Funder: National Grid,
Program Funders: The Community Foundation of Herkimer and Oneida Counties Inc., New York State Technology Enterprise Corp. (NYSTEC), Oneida County and Mohawk Valley EDGE/Oneida County Industrial Development Agency (OCIDA),
Supporting Funders: NBT Bank,
Event Sponsors: Mohawk Valley Applied Technology Corporation, and
Network Sponsors: Griffiss Institute, SUNY Poly and the thINCubator.

As part of National Grid’s suite of economic development programs, the company committed $200,000 in CleanTech Incubation funding to help launch the New York Furnace program. The Program Funders and Supporting Sponsors will provide an additional collective $200,000 to the program.

“National Grid is proud to support Mohawk Valley businesses and seeks opportunities to promote entrepreneurship and investment in the region,” said Melanie Littlejohn, regional executive of National Grid, Central New York. “We are committed to programs like New York Furnace that will allow entrepreneurs in our community to interact, share resources and accelerate their businesses.”

Potential New York Furnace participants must go through a competitive process that includes selecting one of the lab’s available technologies, forming a management team and submitting a proposal. Technologies are available in the fields of advanced materials, communication, cybersecurity, hardware, software and more. The application deadline is November 17.

Teams accepted into New York Furnace will participate in an intensive nine-month accelerator experience that provides $25,000 in seed funding per team, office space and access to top industry mentors. The experience culminates in Demo Day when each team meets with accredited investors.

“Economic development is our main priority, and we believe this program will provide the necessary foundation for start-up businesses,” said Foundation President and CEO Peggy O’Shea.

“We are thrilled to support the creation of new ventures and the development of technology leaders and entrepreneurs through the NY Furnace,” said Michele Salisbury, Director of Economic Development and Outreach, NYSTEC. “NYSTEC will provide our time, talent and funding to enhance the technology transfer accelerator. We are excited to be a part of the NY Furnace as we begin building the blocks of a strong foundation to create a sustainable Innovation Ecosystem in Central NY together.”
“We continue to create an economic ecosystem based in new technologies, whether it’s nanotechnology, unmanned aerial vehicles and systems, cyber security and now the commercialization of research and development of the technologies at being created at Rome Lab,” said Oneida County Executive Anthony Picente. “This is another step in the rebirth of our region and community. We are honored to be sponsors and partners in the NY Furnace accelerator and look forward to the exciting entrepreneurs and companies that will be created through this innovative opportunity.”

“Mohawk Valley EDGE and the Oneida County Industrial Development Agency are proud to support the NY Furnace Program,” said Steven J. DiMeo, President, MVEDGE. “Entrepreneurialism is the backbone of our community and the opportunity we have before us leverages not only our local talent but also a key regional asset- the Air Force Research Laboratory. The NY Furnace Program is part of a region wide effort to continue to expand our robust technology ecosystem and we look forward to the innovative ideas these new entrepreneurs will add to the community.”

“The New York Furnace project is an opportunity for NBT Bank to foster the entrepreneurial spirit that is alive in the Mohawk Valley,” said John Buffa, Regional President, NBT Bank. “NBT Bank takes great pride in supporting economic development opportunities in our community. We are pleased to be a partner in bringing the New York Furnace project to our region and assist entrepreneurs in their future success.”

“The Mohawk Valley Applied Technology is very excited to be a sponsor of this event. This is a unique effort to tap into our local community to grow our economy,” said Paul MacEnroe, President MVATC.

With divisions in New York, Arizona and San Diego, Furnace is a program of Arizona State University’s Pracademic Center of Excellence in Technology Transfer (PACE/T2), a collaboration led by ASU’s Office of the Vice President of Entrepreneurship and Innovation in association with Arizona Technology Enterprises, ASU’s Security and Defense Systems Initiative and ASU’s W. P. Carey School of Business. Funded by the U.S. Department of Defense, PACE/T2 aims to support technology transfer and commercialization from Department of Defense laboratories.

About the Furnace Technology Transfer Accelerator
The Furnace Technology Transfer Accelerator is a startup accelerator that launches new companies based on technologies and intellectual property from participating research institutions. Teams compete for the opportunity to license and commercialize technologies, and selected teams participate in an intensive nine-month accelerator experience that provides seed funding, office space, access to top industry mentors and a culminating Demo Day.

For more information please visit furnaceaccelerator.com.

About National Grid
National Grid (LSE: NG; NYSE:NGG) is an electricity and gas company that connects consumers to energy sources through its networks. The company is at the heart of one of the greatest challenges facing our society - to create new, sustainable energy solutions for the future and developing an energy system that underpins economic prosperity in the 21st century. National Grid holds a vital position at the center of the energy system and it ‘joins everything up’.

In the northeast US, we connect more than seven million gas and electric customers to vital energy sources, essential for our modern lifestyles. In Great Britain, we run the gas and electricity systems that our society is built on, delivering gas and electricity across the country.

National Grid delivers electricity to approximately 3.3 million customers in Massachusetts, New York and Rhode Island. It is the largest distributor of natural gas in northeastern U.S., serving approximately 3.4 million customers in New York, Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

For more information please visit our website: www.nationalgridus.com.

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About The Community Foundation of Herkimer and Oneida Counties, Inc.
Since 1952, The Community Foundation has invested millions of dollars into Oneida and Herkimer counties. The Foundation partners with various organizations and nonprofits in order to make impactful investments in priority areas of need, including economic development, education, arts and culture and health.

About NYSTEC (http://www.nystec.com)
Bringing Clarity to Complex Technology Projects. NYSTEC was founded by New York State in 1995, the same year Griffiss Air Force Base closed in Rome, NY. NYSTEC identifies strategic projects that strive to enhance scientific and technological knowledge and capabilities at all levels of public sector government, thus benefitting the public at large. NYSTEC helps State agencies and local governments leverage the specialized expertise, methodologies, and technology resources of NYSTEC, the United States Air Force Research Laboratory in Rome, NY (Rome Labs), and other providers at Rome Labs.

About Oneida County
Situated in the geographical center of New York State, Oneida County is a county of contrasts- comprised of productive farmland, and forested areas, and of industrialized urban areas and suburban communities. The principal geographical feature, the Mohawk River Valley, bisects the county in an east-west direction.

Mohawk Valley EDGE and the Oneida County Industrial Development Agency along with its partner organizations collaboratively support entrepreneurism in our community.

About NBT Bank
NBT Bank is an independent community bank based in Norwich, N.Y. They trace their roots back to 1856 and are proud of their heritage of building long-term financial relationships. Today, NBT Bank offers personal banking, asset management and business services through a network of more than 155 banking locations in five states including upstate New York, northeastern Pennsylvania, northwestern Vermont, western Massachusetts and southern New Hampshire.

Mohawk Valley Applied Technology Corporation (MVATC) is a locally based business development firm with nationwide resources. The mission of MVATC is to assist Mohawk Valley's small and medium sized manufacturing and high technology companies to increase their global competitiveness. The vision is to promote the growth of the Mohawk Valley by supporting the development of for-profit high technology and manufacturing businesses.