News & Events

Payback of Ben Franklin Investment Fuels New Startups

Members of the Erie community came together to celebrate some of the local innovators who’ve successfully made the leap from start-up to up-and-running and recognized the efforts of some of Ben Franklin Technology Partners’ newest portfolio clients.

Sixteen companies either received or paid funds forward to contribute to new startups, totaling an amount of more than $3.4 million.

Ben Franklin’s investments– along with the valuable expertise of the leadership and staff at both the Erie Technology Incubator and Small Business Development Center at Gannon University– have helped support the development of new products and processes in many local startups.

The success of each of these companies, which either resulted in a sale or merger, created the opportunity for Ben Franklin’s original investment to be repaid and the dollars re-deployed into our community. Among these were MIDEO (end-of-life health care directives), InnovaTel (virtual services for psychiatric care), and Lojic.

Emerging startups were all able to receive Ben Franklin funding as a result of this. These companies included Alex & Thea, Data Inventions, Elements Aligned, PSNergy, WaveClear Vascular, Altered State Distillery, Bling Tiger, OhanaLink Technologies, Glacier Scalp Cooling, My Readiness Coach, Werkberry, Anova Innovations, DSE Global.

Every year dozens of startups like these get their start with funding and business support services offered by local and regional entrepreneurial support resources, including Ben Franklin Technology Partners, the Erie Technology Incubator and Small Business Development Center at Gannon University, Erie County Gaming Revenue Authority, Erie County Redevelopment Authority, Regional Chamber and Growth Partnership and the Hartman Innovation Fund in partnership with Ben Franklin Technology Partners and The Erie Community Foundation.

These partners came together at today’s event to celebrate the success of the companies to which they’ve contributed funding and mentoring support.

Ben Franklin Technology Partners – The largest seed investor in the region, Ben Franklin Technology Partners/CNP, (an initiative of the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development and funded by the Ben Franklin Technology Development Authority) provides investment capital, business mentoring & support services, BIG IDEA Contests, and TechCelerator Startup Boot Camps to emerging tech-based companies and small, existing manufacturers.

Gannon University Small Business Development Center provides no-cost consulting services to entrepreneurs and small business owners. Whether you need help identifying local markets for your business, are developing a business plan and want a second opinion, or have compliance issues you’d like to clarify, SBDC consultants are ready to help you grow your business. The Gannon University SBDC has been hosted by Gannon University for more than 40 years.

Erie Technology Incubator (ETI) serves Northwest Pennsylvania with a unique blend of strategic guidance, dedicated mentor teams, 1:1 coaching and networking opportunities. For more information, visit