Innovation Fund is different. We don’t take any equity, so our money is entrepreneur friendly. And we’re based at community colleges, so our approach is all about entrepreneur education.
Investing in startups so they can impact the community.
We fund technology startups led by entrepreneurs who want to create jobs in their communities and inspire the next generation of entrepreneurs. We only have one goal: to help startups succeed. That’s why we work the way we do.
STEP 1: APPLY AND LEARN
We’re always accepting applications. And our investment process is as much about mentorship and education as it is winning funding.
STEP 2: ACCEPT FRIENDLY FUNDING
We don’t take any equity. That’s not the kind of return on investment we’re interested in. We take on the risk so entrepreneurs can focus on their startups.
STEP 3: SET AND REACH MILESTONES
Our experienced mentors help entrepreneurs set and reach aggressive company milestones. This project-based approach makes every dollar count and gets companies closer to entering the market and creating jobs.
STEP 4: RAISE MORE AND GIVE BACK
Successful companies will be ready to raise more money at the end of their funding project. They’ll also be able and inspired to give back to the fund—just the amount they won—so we can invest in more young companies.
We have worked with a growing roster of innovative community colleges that are committed to helping entrepreneurs in their backyards start and grow innovative companies.
Lorain County Community College based Innovation Fund Northeast Ohio is the most active seed fund in Cleveland’s thriving startup scene. The city is transforming itself into a hub for innovation and the fund gives young companies a place to go for first-in financing.
Catawba Valley Community College was part of the Innovation Fund America pilot phase. The college's Innovation Fund North Carolina was a statewide resource that gave startups early funding to grow.
Long Beach City College was part of the Innovation Fund America pilot phase. The college's Innovation Fund So Cal provided pre-seed funding to tech startups in Southern California.
Innovation Fund Macomb Community College Powered by JPMorgan Chase & Co. is stimulating Southeast Michigan’s entrepreneurial activity, wealth creation, and social prosperity by funding innovation-led startups with high-growth potential.
Our funding locations and their portfolio companies are making news across the U.S. and we’ve put it all right here. Read the latest headlines in your region.
Akron's Segmint partners with IBM
Micro Fantasy featured on NPR's How I Built This
Akron startup Cannibuster aims to measure marijuana use in drivers
Six Tech Startups Receive $225,000 from Innovation Fund Northeast Ohio
For nearly a decade, Innovation Funds have been bridging the financial gap between innovative ideas and impactful companies. And much like the businesses we help grow, numbers help illustrate our success. We are proud of every dollar we’ve invested and the impact it’s had.