New Startup Launch Program Helps Early-Stage Startups with $5K Grants

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April 8, 2021 By Kaitlin Aquino

Hans Imhof, donor of the Startup Launch Grant, board member at UCI Beall Applied Innovation and president of real estate company Warner Management, is inspired by the entrepreneurial potential he sees in the Orange County business ecosystem. From UCI Beall Applied Innovation website

Early-stage startups need lots of support and resources to succeed. The UCI Beall Applied Innovation new Startup Launch Program is well-aware of this startup struggle and is offering a Startup Launch Grant for emerging companies that need capital to get their businesses off the ground.

The Startup Launch Grant provides up to $5,000 to help cover the costs of early-stage entrepreneurship for UCI-affiliated startups. Companies that receive the new grant can use it to purchase prototyping materials, pay patent fees, cover expenses related to the usage of facilities at the Cove, Applied Innovation’s headquarters, such as its office spaces, laboratories, event venues and more.

Rather than awarding the entire grant to a company all at once, the Startup Launch Program incentivizes startups to meet their goals by distributing the funding in installments based on their progress. Every time a startup reaches a designated milestone, it will receive a portion of its awarded grant.

The Startup Launch Program’s new grants are the product of a $25,000 donation from Hans Imhof, a board member at Applied Innovation and the president of real estate company Warner Management. Imhof was inspired by the potential he sees in the Orange County business ecosystem

“Orange County is a great place to start a company with its many resources, networking opportunities and technologies that come out of UCI and the community,” said Imhof. “Richard [Sudek] has really brought the university and the community together through Beall Applied Innovation and I would encourage more investors to look at startups in this area and consider funding these startups.”

Two Wayfinder startups recently received a $5,000 grant each from the Startup Launch Grant. The first round of winners are Sayenza Biosciences, UCI technology that features an automated and closed fat processing system for regenerative medicine, and VolunteerCrowd, a cloud computing volunteer marketplace and college transcript platform.

The Startup Launch Program is also receiving support from the Richard Sudek Entrepreneurship Fund, which was created in honor of Richard Sudek, the former executive director of Applied Innovation and UCI chief innovation officer, and supports Sudek’s vision of a strong, diverse innovation ecosystem in Orange County.

Apply for a Startup Launch Grant.

Main Graphic: Kate Wokowsky, UCI Beall Applied Innovation

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