• FIND YOUR OPPORTUNITY.

    Where will it take you?

  • ENTREPRENEURS

    Connect to resources to grow your business.

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  • INDUSTRIES

    Gain access to new technologies, R&D support, and intellectual property.

    learn more
  • STUDENTS

    Entrepreneurship education and competitions to kick start your idea.

    learn more
  • RESEARCHERS

    Start a company or connect with industry to commercialize your research.

    learn more
  • INVESTORS

    Connect to businesses with high growth potential.

    learn more
  • POLICY MAKERS

    CIE programs advance innovation and entrepreneurship in our community.

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CENTER FOR INNOVATION & ENTREPRENEURSHIP

The Entry Point to a Suite of Award-Winning Innovation Services

As its name suggests, the UCF Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship (CIE) is the entry point for the many organizations and programs university-wide that support innovation and entrepreneurship.

Additionally, UCF is a research university where faculty, students and staff are discovering innovative solutions to challenging problems. Sponsored research and technology licensing are two ways you can tap into the intellectual power driving these discoveries.

Whether you are faculty, student or staff, or part of the bigger Central Florida community, we have resources that can support your entrepreneurial goals. Contact us today to get started.

Connect with the CIE programs…

UCF Business Incubation Program logoThe UCF Business Incubation Program helps early-stage businesses develop into financially stable companies by providing the tools, training, and infrastructure that help facilitate smarter, faster startup growth. Website.

UCF Venture Accelerator Lab logoThe UCF Venture Accelerator Lab offers workshops and advisory services to assist with market research, business planning, and more to help determine the market potential of technology-based business ideas. Website.

Office of Technology Transfer logoUCF has hundreds of innovations ranging from sensors to simulators, nano tech to clean tech, and more. Our Technology Locator can help you find the solution that’s right for your business.

0- 262UCF’s Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership offers education, startup resources, collaboration facilities, venture acceleration, competitions and events to help students launch innovative new ventures. Website.

I-Corps logoI-Corps leads qualified entrepreneurial teams through a five-week “bootcamp” of learning, evaluating and transferring knowledge into marketable products which have a benefit or impact on society. Website.

GrowFL logoGrowFL helps CEOs discover the people and resources needed to help their business grow through seminars on management principles most important to second-stage growth companies. Website.

0 009The Florida Small Business Development Center at UCF provides seminars and consulting for owners to help with: market research, financial analysis, loan assistance, taxes, business valuation, and more. Website.

TURNING IDEAS INTO

OPPORTUNITY

UCF

Our efforts have been recognized as one of the most comprehensive and best-integrated collections of entrepreneurship initiatives in the United States. These initiatives contributed to Orlando being recognized by Entrepreneur Magazine as having, “one of the most highly coordinated entrepreneurial engines in the country.”

ENTREPRENEURS

CONNECT TO RESOURCES TO GROW YOUR BUSINESS.

Idea/Early-Stage

Venture Accelerator Lab

The UCF Venture Accelerator Lab (VAL) is a place for technology entrepreneurs to transform innovative ideas and intellectual property into business plans with high growth potential. VAL offers workshops and advisory services to assist with market research, business planning, models and presentations to help you determine the market potential of technology-based business ideas.

Business Incubator Program

The UCF Business Incubation Program helps early-stage businesses develop into financially stable companies by providing the tools, training and infrastructure that help facilitate smarter, faster startup growth.

Florida Small Business Development Center at UCF

The Florida SBDC at UCF (located in the National Entrepreneur Center at the Fashion Square Mall) provides business seminars and confidential, no-cost, one-on-one consulting for small business owners. The certified business consultants can help with: business planning, market research, advertising, financial analysis, loan assistance, recordkeeping, taxes, selling to the government, business valuation, business start-up and more.

I-Corps

Using the Lean Startup method, I-Corps leads qualified entrepreneurial teams through a five-week “boot camp” of learning, evaluating and transferring knowledge into marketable products which have a benefit or impact on society. Entrepreneurial teams are made up of a faculty member, student, and an entrepreneurial lead (an experienced entrepreneur or industry expert to help guide the team forward). Cohorts start in the spring and fall. Applications are required.

Blackstone LaunchPad at UCF

Entrepreneurship can be a viable career path and the Blackstone LaunchPad at UCF is here to support students, staff, and alumni realize that dream. Visit the Blackstone LaunchPad in the UCF Student Union for one-on-one coaching, advice and networking resources to help develop ideas into compelling new venture proposals.

Second-Stage

GrowFL

GrowFL helps CEOs of second-stage growth enterprises take their leadership and their companies to the next level. Through peer-to-peer mentorship and advanced training in management principles and practices, CEOs will discover the people and resources needed to help their business thrive.

Florida Small Business Development Center at UCF

In addition to assisting early stage companies, the Florida SBDC at UCF (located in the National Entrepreneur Center at the Fashion Square Mall) can also assist second-stage companies. Resources and services include an advisory board, CEO round table, seminars, and  government contracting, international trade, and business growth and strategy support.

Technology for Licensing

UCF Office of Technology Transfer

Are you looking for the next breakthrough technology to disrupt a market and on which to build a business? Startups, Start Here is a hand curated list of technologies that are closer to market-ready so entrepreneurs can dive right in.

Or, established companies with existing product lines may be looking for the next technology advancement to give them a competitive advantage. A quick search through UCF’s large portfolio of technologies available for licensing, developed by UCF researchers, may turn up a solution to help you do just that.

Whether you are interested in diagnostics or displays, sensors or simulators, nano tech or clean tech, you may find what you are looking for at UCF.

Funding Solutions

Florida Angel Nexus

Fundraising can be an overwhelming process. NEXUS strives to reduce the barriers Florida entrepreneurs face moving from the idea stage to growth and sustainability. Our goal is wealth creation for our portfolio companies, their teams and our investors.

Regional Venture Capital
Regional venture capital firms provide an opportunity to secure early stage funding for your business.

Arsenal Venture Partners

Ballast Point Ventures

Stonehenge Growth Capital

Inflexion Partners

Grants
The following are grant options for technology-based companies.

Florida High Tech Corridor Council

Need funding to commercialize university technology in Florida? The Florida High Tech Corridor Council’s regional Matching Grants Research Program pairs industry partners with university researchers to help fund commercially viable technologies. The funds can also be used to match SBIR awards.

Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) / Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Grants

Over $2 billion in SBIR grants will be awarded to innovative small and startup technology companies this year. Learn how research faculty and students and technology entrepreneurs can access these government dollars for technology commercialization.

INDUSTRY

Gain access to new technologies, R&D support, and intellectual property.

UCF Office of Technology Transfer

UCF has hundreds of innovations ranging from diagnostics to displays, sensors to simulators, nano tech to clean tech, and many more. Our Technology Locator can help you find the solution that’s right for your business.

UCF Centers and Institutes

UCF has ten research centers and institutes where faculty, students and staff are innovating cutting-edge technology and developing social, economic, and ecological solutions. Your company can sponsor research in any of these labs to support your specific R&D goals. For more information about sponsored research, contact Vaidy.

STUDENTS

Entrepreneurship education and competitions to kick start your idea.

Blackstone LaunchPad

The Blackstone LaunchPad at UCF provides one-on-one coaching, daily StartUp Seminars, and access to a mentor network and subject matter experts to support student efforts to develop their ideas into compelling new venture proposals.

I-Corps

Using the Lean Startup method, I-Corps leads qualified entrepreneurial teams through a five-week “boot camp” of learning, evaluating and transferring knowledge into marketable products which have a benefit or impact on society. Entrepreneurial teams are made up of a faculty member, student and an entrepreneurial lead (an experienced entrepreneur or industry expert to help guide the team forward). New cohorts start year round. Applications are required.

Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership

The Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership (CEL) is located in the College of Business and offers UCF students in any academic discipline the opportunity to explore entrepreneurship through education, startup resources, collaboration facilities, venture acceleration, competitions and events to help students launch innovative new ventures.

RESEARCHERS

Start a company or connect with industry to commercialize your research.

Innovation

UCF Office of Technology Transfer

When you are ready to disclose your new discovery or innovation to the public either by publication or presentation, file an Invention Disclosure form with the Office of Technology Transfer first to ensure it remains protected. Our team of professionals will work with you through the intellectual property protection process and marketing and licensing the technology for commercial use. We can also help guide you if you choose to start a company to bring your discovery to market.

Pivot

The Pivot database is a catalog of available funding opportunities from international, federal, state and private sponsors. It is also a resource for identifying potential collaborators within and outside of UCF.

Commericialization

The following programs can support you if you choose to start a company to bring your discovery to the market. Each program can support different company teams and formation stages.

Venture Accelerator Lab

The UCF Venture Accelerator Lab (VAL) is a place for technology entrepreneurs to transform innovative ideas and intellectual property into business plans with high growth potential. VAL offers workshops and advisory services to assist with market research, business planning, models and presentations to help you determine the market potential of technology-based business ideas.

Business Incubator Program

The UCF Business Incubation Program helps early-stage businesses develop into financially stable companies by providing the tools, training and infrastructure that help facilitate smarter, faster startup growth.

I-Corps

Using the Lean Startup method, I-Corps leads qualified entrepreneurial teams through a five-week “boot camp” of learning, evaluating and transferring knowledge into marketable products which have a benefit or impact on society. Entrepreneurial teams are made up of a faculty member, student and an entrepreneurial lead (an experienced entrepreneur or industry expert to help guide the team forward). New cohorts start year round. Applications are required.

Florida High Tech Corridor Council

The Florida High Tech Corridor Council’s regional Matching Grants Research Program pairs industry partners with university researchers to help fund commercially viable technologies. The funds can also be used to match SBIR awards.

SBIR / STTR

Over $2 billion in SBIR grants will be awarded to research faculty, students, and technology entrepreneurs for innovative small and startup technology companies this year. Learn more about the SBIR / STTR grants. Contact Jack Henkel for more information about how you can apply for funding.

INVESTORS

Connect to businesses with high growth potential.

Florida Angel Nexus
Are you an accredited angel investor looking to get involved in technology startups? The Florida Angel Nexus (FAN) is a state-wide network of investors and investment groups tying technology companies, members, deal information, and advisers together.

Sponsor Events that Propel and Recognize Entrepreneurs:

UCF Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership

UCF’s campus-wide academic entrepreneurship center for students, CEL prepares students to create value as entrepreneurial leaders. Events for student entrepreneurs include: Starter Riot, Joust Business Plan Tournament and Business Model Competition.

Florida Companies to Watch

Florida Companies to Watch celebrates growing second-stage companies headquartered in Florida. Companies to Watch was developed by the Edward Lowe Foundation as a unique way to recognize and honor second-stage companies that demonstrate high performance in the marketplace with innovative strategies and processes, making them “worth watching”.

MegaWatt Ventures

MegaWatt Ventures is an annual cleantech business competition for university student teams to compete for a $50,000 prize to launch and grow their cleantech innovations into a successful business.

POLICY MAKERS

News & Events

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UCF Awarded Department of Energy Grant