Interest: Nearly $1.5-billion was raised for over a million different campaigns around the world last year by 452 different crowd-funding sites, according to a recent industry report from research firm Massolution.
That number is expected to grow exponentially once US regulators approve a recently-passed law that allows regular people to buy stock in a startup company using crowd-funding.
Interest: FloridaWorks received a $11.95 million grant from the U.S. Department of Labor to duplicate its entrepreneurship training program in seven other Florida workforce regions.
The regional board for Alachua and Bradford counties was one of 26 recipients for grants of $1 million to $12 million and totaling nearly $147 million for projects to teach skills needed to return to work.
Interest: Over the past several weeks, more than a dozen UConn students and newly minted graduates have returned to campus equipped with notebooks, business plans, and entrepreneurial ambitions.
As winners and selected runners-up in this year’s inaugural Innovation Quest challenge at UConn, they’re now getting the equivalent of master classes from experts to help them build their businesses.
Interest: Carnegie Mellon University's Open Field Entrepreneurs Fund (OFEF) has awarded $500,000 to 10 startup companies from across the U.S. to assist them in growing their business ventures. Announced last year, the fund was established by CMU alumnus and Flip Video Camera creator Jonathan Kaplan and his wife, Marci Glazer, to provide early-stage business financing and support to alumni who have graduated from CMU in the last five years.
Source: PR Newswire (http://s.tt/1f3SW)
Interest: The University of Massachusetts has awarded $750,000 in grants to faculty members working on six research projects, from testing robotics systems to new skin cancer imaging technologies, UMass reported Monday. Projects include big data, robotics, bioinformatics and behavioral sensing.
Interest: Recently, Stanford University’s BASES group, along with San Francisco start-up YouNoodle, hosted a start-up competition where 100 entrepreneurs from around the world presented to a panel of judges and sponsors including Sequoia Capital, Perkins Cole, and Intel Foundation’s Desafio Intel. The winner of the competition was Ryan Marschang. His start up, Invisergy, uses a special technology to convert any transparent surface into an inexpensive electricity-generating device.
Interest: The JOBS Act and crowd funding — are they the new paradigm?
The act is designed to allow small companies to go public with less red tape and fewer Securities and Exchange Commission regulations. Crowd funding is a model that allows the little guy, the small investor, to invest in promising young companies and give himself the opportunity to lose his shirt, same as the big guys who bought Facebook at $38 per share.
Interest: Crowdfunding is this decade's new tool for helping Artists raise money to reach their goals – and it just got better. Kickstarter, IndieGoGo, RocketHub, and other Crowdfunding service companies are being used successfully by Artists to raise money for projects, but the average Kickstarter campaign raises about $4,500. (Hey, we can't all be Amanda Palmer and raise $1M+) For the Artist with more serious aspirations – and a need for more serious funds – the new JOBS Act signed by the President has
Interest: The JOBS Act is probably best-known for creating an “IPO on ramp” intended to reduce the cost and complexity of going public, but the act also contains important benefits for startups that are years away from an IPO, or never plan to go public.
Interest: A team of George Washington University researchers have received federal funding to study the effects earthquakes have on nuclear reactor cores. The findings of the research have implications for nuclear reactor construction and analysis well into the future.
Interest: Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis is one of nine universities to share in $2.7 million in federal funding for research projects that will support the continuing innovation and development of clean-coal technologies.
Interest: 3D Biomatrix, which was launched in 2010, owes its existence, and its future, to an initial $655,000 investment by a consortium led by Ann Arbor Spark, a local economic development agency, and the Michigan Economic Development Corp.
The company also recently landed a $1.6 million investment from a Michigan angel fund group. Angel funds are a type of venture financing in which wealthy individuals pool their own money to invest in companies.
Interest: A better test to diagnose certain kinds of cancer; screws and plates used in bone surgery that are biodegradable; and injectable dental putty to spur bone growth are among the ideas the University of Pittsburgh is considering funding in an effort to aid fledgling life science companies.
Interest: Separately, the University of California revealed that it recently made investments in two more Sequoia funds — the 2011 late-stage Sequoia Capital U.S. Growth Fund V and Sequoia U.S. Venture 2010, a $451 million balanced stage fund. It did not disclose the size of the commitments. The LP said last month that it had made a $30 million commitment to the $1.36 billion early stage Sequoia Capital 2010 fund.
Interest: The Wolverine Venture Fund joined fellow Ann Arbor-based fund Arboretum Ventures in the Series D round of venture capital funding spearheaded by Abingworth, an international venture capital fund, which raised $25 million for the company.
University of Michigan students manage the $5.5 million Wolverine Venture Fund in teams that focus on different industries, with faculty members serving as managing directors. Local and international VC firms serve as advisors.
Interest: The Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Northeastern Pennsylvania’s (BFTP/NEP) Board of Directors approved the investment of $342,547 in support of regional economic development. BFTP/NEP’s goal is to help lead northeastern Pennsylvania to a better economic future by building partnerships that develop and apply technology for competitive advantage.
Interest: Wilhelm was the keynote speaker at the BioVenture and Innovation Showcase, an annual event that spotlights up-and-coming high-tech startup firms in Southeast Ohio and allows entrepreneurs to network with business experts, venture capitalists and other potential investors.
Interest: At the recent seventh annual Wireless Health Convergence Summit in San Diego, RightCare Solutions was awarded first prize and $100,000 in the first Janssen Connected Care Challenge sponsored by Janssen Healthcare Innovation, a San Diego-based venture that is owned by pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson. The problem that RightCare solves is which patients are most at risk for readmission within 30 days.
Interest: Crowd funding is an emerging Internet and finance trend, using social media, online networks and payment technologies increasingly strip away legal, psychological and logistical barriers for money solicitations. Sites such as RocketHub call on individuals to pool money via the Internet to support others' business, charitable and creative efforts.