Last September, I wrote about the reasons that The InVentures Group was excited to be operating here in Western New York, the fact that there were a lot of terrific companies, technologies, and entrepreneurs. And while the region has not been known, at least in the past 50 years, as a center of economic vitality, that is definitely starting to change. In the interest of full disclosure, I am a native of the area, having spent over half a century here, I am a lifetime Buffalo Bills and Sabres fan, as hard as that can be at times, and I opted to attend the University of Buffalo instead of some prestigious East and West Coast schools that were willing to take me! So I can be accused of having a bias, but I think that the evidence and actions speak louder than words. Here is what’s happening within a few miles of the IVG headquarters:
- There are construction cranes everywhere as the UB Medical School, Coventus, Innovation Center, and Buffalo Manufacturing Works all set up shop on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus which already is home to the Hauptmann Woodward Research Institute, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, the UB Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics, the Jacobs Institute, and many other leading scientific and educational entities.
- Over a billion dollars of investment and thousands of jobs are being created between the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus and Riverbend – a NY State initiative that will bring Elon Musk’s most recent acquisition in the solar energy world to WNY along with Soraa, a major innovator in the LED lighting space backed by Vinod Khosla and others.
- In October, Buffalo will host the finalists of 43North – the world’s largest business plan – and eleven winners of $5 million of cash along with additional awards of space and services will be selected.
The InVentures Group is excited to be in the mix of nearly all of this exciting development. We have provided services, support, and investment capital to several companies located on the BNMC campus, we’re working closely with the University of Buffalo to assist them in their technology transfer efforts through mentoring, lecturing, and seminars, we’re working with several companies hoping to participate in Riverbend, and we were a founding member of Buffalo Manufacturing Works. In addition, we assisted three companies in preparing their submissions to 43North and all three recently learned that they have been selected as semifinalists. Of nearly 7,000 initial submissions, only 113 survived – roughly 1.5% - so batting three out of three was a huge win for InVentures and our clients.
It may not be Silicon Valley, but from where we sit, Buffalo is the place to be right now.