Launch NY

Launch NY is a Venture Development Organization. A business-driven, nonprofit that promotes regional growth by providing a flexible portfolio of services, including: assisting in the creation of high-growth companies; providing expert business assistance to those companies; facilitating or making direct financial investments; and, speeding the commercialization of technology.Launch NY, established in 2011, began with the preparation of a Regional Economic Action Plan (REAP), a project funded in 2010 by an Economic Development Administration grant to the Erie County Industrial Development Agency, and focused on JumpStart’s nationally recognized model for accelerating the success of diverse entrepreneurs, their high growth companies and the ecosystems supporting them. 

The demographic profile of Upstate New York aligns well with the overall profile of JumpStart in Northeast Ohio, and offers some potential advantages when comparing the education of the workforce and the amount of research spending at the colleges and universities across the region. While we have a large amount of university research, a legacy of innovation, and a well-educated workforce, there exists a lack of sufficient entrepreneurial talent, related expertise, and investment capital to take advantage of these strengths. The region lacks enough well-established sources of venture capital and has been unable to consistently attract capital from private investors located outside the region. Currently, the region produces a sizeable number of new high potential startup opportunities but only some of these qualify for professional investment. The region has the potential to increase this number substantially, but deal flow is perceived to be suppressed by a shortage of entrepreneurial assistance, experienced management leadership, and investment capital. 

Launch NY provides support for the 27 counties of Upstate New York with 4 Regional Entrepreneurs in Residence (EIR) based in Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse and Ithaca. In recent months Launch NY has engaged in extensive networking activities to support the Upstate NY entrepreneurial ecosystem at 22 separate events, six were provided various levels of sponsorships. These events were attended by 1,391 entrepreneurs, 293 investors, and 1,571 resource providers, over 3,200 attendees total. Since January 2013, Launch NY EIR’s have provided 2240 hours of direct support to 126 regional start ups, with 338 employees, and assisted 20 of these companies secure over $8.7M of investments.