OU Innovation Center awarded Rural Business Development Grant

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Ohio University’s Innovation Center has announced a Rural Business Development Grant (RBDG) grant award from the U.S. Department of Agriculture worth $99,000, with funds to help purchase biotechnology equipment for use by small and emerging private businesses served by the business incubator.

“The state-of-the-art equipment will be used daily by our client startup companies, and its availability eliminates the need for young companies to bear the costs of such equipment purchases during their cash-strapped first few years,” said Stacy Strauss, director of the Innovation Center. “Without this grant, such equipment purchases would certainly be a barrier that delays or prevents a promising venture from launching in our region.”

The grant-funded equipment will be housed in the center’s two shared laboratories, which provide space and equipment for incubated biotechnology, Stirling engine and life science companies. The incubator currently is home to 17 companies in the areas of life sciences and biotechnology, software and other products.

“With high startup costs for biotechnology companies, having these central resources will be crucial for our clients’ pathways to success,” said David Koonce, interim vice president for research and creative activity and interim dean of the Graduate College at Ohio University.