QI Offers Services to Support Teams in New UC San Diego Technology Accelerator

San Diego, May 23, 2017 — The Institute for the Global Entrepreneur (IGE) at UC San Diego announced the selection of five research teams for its new technology accelerator. IGE is a collaboration between the Jacobs School of Engineering and the Rady School of Management, and the IGE Technology Accelerator provides each team up to $50,000 in financial support over the year-long program. In addition, each team receives $25,000 in expertise and facilities access at UC San Diego’s Qualcomm Institute, including for the use of its Nano3 cleanroom labs and its world-class Prototyping Facility, with other QI services subject to availability.

Rajan Kumar is the lead for the team developing new stretchable battery technologies. Kumar is a nanoengineering PhD student at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering. 

The particular focus of the IGE Technology Accelerator is on helping teams validate their technologies and business models by field testing their prototypes with strategic partners. The accelerator also provides entrepreneurship training, business and technical mentoring, industry connections, and access to research and prototyping facilities.

“At the Institute for the Global Entrepreneur, we are focused on unlocking the potential of the numerous innovations we generate at UC San Diego,” said Sujit Dey, director of the Institute for the Global Entrepreneur and a professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering. “There are many research projects on campus that have tremendous market potential, but successful commercialization requires strategy, planning, organization and support. We are excited to be providing our first group of talented and promising teams in the technology accelerator with these resources. Ensuring that teams successfully perform strategic field testing of their prototypes, potentially with a future customer, is one of the unique aspects of this technology accelerator,” said Dey.

The milestone-based program offers funding for developing, fine tuning, and testing prototypes with actual users. Each team works with a team of dedicated mentors from a pool of seasoned entrepreneurs and relevant technical experts.Each team in the initial cohort is based in the Jacobs School of Engineering, with collaborators across campus. The teams are:

“With this accelerator, we are working to fill the gaps in the path to commercialization,” said Dennis Abremski, executive director of the Institute for the Global Entrepreneur. “Testing prototypes with potential customers or other partners is one of the critical steps toward successful commercialization that many teams struggle with.”

Because timing often makes the difference between success and failure, the IGE Technology Accelerator aims to reduce the time it takes each team to get their first customer.

“We’ve structured the program to shorten the timelines for validating technologies and product-market fit,” said Abremski. “The money is important, but this accelerator is about so much more than the money.”

“One thing we see over and over is a gap between what entrepreneurs perceive as their value proposition, target market, and success strategies versus their actual value and eventual business strategies,” said Dr. Vish Krishnan, associate director of the Institute for the Global Entrepreneur and the Rady School director of Entrepreneurship programs and Professor of Innovation, Technology and Operations. “It is important to equip the teams with mentoring and peer group support that prepares them for the turbulent world of new venture creation. As a collaboration between the Rady School and the Jacobs School, the Institute for the Global Entrepreneur is uniquely positioned to help teams commercialize their discoveries.”

IGE Technology Accelerator Funding

The IGE Technology Accelerator program is one of a series of new and ongoing innovation and entrepreneurship initiatives that received support from the Office of the Chancellor and from California Assembly Bill 2664, which provided $2.2 million for each UC campus to expand innovation and entrepreneurship activities.

Funding for the IGE Technology Accelerator was generously matched by a gift from The Legler Benbough Foundation. “We see technology accelerators like IGE’s that recognize new innovation and promote the development of new enterprise, as a major economic driver for the future of San Diego,” said Peter K. Ellsworth, president of The Legler Benbough Foundation.

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Related Links

Institute for the Global Entrepreneur
Jacobs School of Engineering
Rady School of Management
Qualcomm Institute

Media Contacts

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