UMBC is site of state’s first clean energy incubator

The Maryland Clean Energy Center has partnered with bwtech@UMBC to support early stage companies working with clean energy technologies and advance green job creation in our state.

The Maryland Clean Energy Technology Incubator@bwtech (CETI) is the first site in a planned statewide network of clean energy incubators, which will strengthen Maryland’s Smart, Green and Growing energy economy. 

“The Maryland Clean Energy Center is striving to partner with energy experts throughout the state in order to fulfill its mission of growing Maryland’s clean energy economy through related economic development and job creation,” Katherine Magruder, executive director of MCEC said. “Because bwtech@UMBC has a proven track record of success our Board elected to work with their team to establish our first Clean Energy Incubator Network site at UMBC.”

According to Magruder, “the intention is to draw from the depth and variety of the research presence in the state, and use the incubator network to move discoveries from the bench to the bank in the commercialization pipeline.”

“The program seeks to provide affordable space as well as assistance with business plans, marketing, and management of intellectual property for start-up companies that are focused on a clean or renewable energy product, service or technology,” she said.

CETI will provide services specifically tailored to the needs of companies working with solar power, wind power, geothermal, hydro-power, biofuels, as well as energy management and storage technologies. A part-time Entrepreneur-in-Residence and an advisory board of experienced researchers and executives in the clean energy sector will also provide tenant companies with assistance.

CETI will occupy about 18,000 square feet of office and wet lab space in the Biotechnology Building of bwtech@UMBC’s Incubator and Accelerator, located on the south campus of the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC).

CETI is a natural fit with UMBC’s strengths in environmental sciences and bwtech@UMBC’s interest in and support of environmental science companies. bwtech@UMBC already hosts the headquarters of the U.S. Geological Survey’s Maryland-Delaware-District of Columbia Water Science Center and the addition of CETI will create additional opportunities for university-industry collaborations. CETI resident companies will have the opportunity to collaborate with UMBC faculty and students, as nearly all of the other bwtech@UMBC companies have done. With UMBC ranked #1 among up-and-coming national universities by U.S. News and World Report, CETI represents yet another innovative approach to enhance UMBC’s contributions to Baltimore County and the state of Maryland.

The incubator also fits with the university’s plans to build energy expertise at UMBC. Officials from bwtech@UMBC and the Maryland Institute for Policy Analysis and Research (MIPAR) at UMBC are currently working to establish an Office of Energy Policy to serve as the primary center for energy policy research in Maryland.

“bwtech@UMBC is delighted to establish this groundbreaking incubator,” said Ellen Hemmerly, executive director of the bwtech@UMBC Research and Technology Park. “Maryland is positioned to become a leader in bioscience and environmental technologies, and we are excited to be a part of it.”

Initial funding for the CETI will be provided by MCEC, bwtech@UMBC, and a grant from the Baltimore County Department of Economic Development to support the Entrepreneur-in-Residence.

“bwtech@UMBC has been a leader in nurturing entrepreneurship, fostering new ideas and generating jobs in Baltimore County for nearly two decades,” said David S. Iannucci, executive director of Baltimore County Economic Development. “The Clean Energy Technology Incubator will increase its economic impact on the region.”

 “We are grateful to Baltimore County for their willingness to support this partnership with funding and certain this relationship will be successful for all involved,” MCEC Board Chairman, Ken Connolly said.

In the long term, MCEC is hoping to replicate this model in partnership with other jurisdictions and their economic development agencies.

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