Koffman incubator bolsters startup success

Members of the winter 2019 cohort of the Accelerator Program at the Koffman Southern Tier Incubator received special support to develop their business startups.

The Accelerator Program is a three-month boot camp for local entrepreneurs with promising business ideas. The program allows for startup founders to attend eight to 10 classes that advance them through the phases of business development: ideation, the business model canvas and customer discovery. Participants also meet one-on-one with the director of Binghamton University’s business incubation program, Eric Krohn, for additional mentorship and guidance.

In January, Broome County awarded two previous program participants — Matthew E. Gill ’18 of Enhance VR and Hazell McKenzie of AdamaDOLL — each with a $5,000 grant to further their startups.

Sara J. Liu ’06 and Lei Liu ’04, MBA ’07, founders of Parlor City Vegan, were selling their made-from-scratch, plant-based comfort food at the Broome County Regional Farmers Market on weekends. The couple participated in the Accelerator Program in 2017 and won the city of Binghamton’s small business plan competition in 2018. Now, they are raising money to open a 100 percent-vegan café in Binghamton.

The Southern Tier High Technology Incubator Inc. (STHTI), the nonprofit organization that was formed to establish the Koffman incubator, is an affiliate of the Binghamton University Foundation.

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