CTNext Identifies Additional Partnerships to Support Entrepreneurs and Small Businesses

More than 20 partners now support innovation ecosystem members in Connecticut

Rocky Hill, Conn. – July 13, 2015CTNext, Connecticut’s innovation ecosystem managed by Connecticut Innovations, today announced the second round of CTNext partner awards for 2015. The goal of the partners is to provide entrepreneurs in Connecticut with tools to help grow companies, jobs and revenues.

CTNext has awarded partnerships to the following Connecticut companies:

  • Business Council of Fairfield County (Stamford) will improve the supply and placement of technical and digital talent available to entrepreneurial companies in Fairfield County.
  • Connecticut Technology Council (East Hartford) will create a directory of jobs and available talent and a skills challenge where job-ready applicants can demonstrate their skills to employers.
  • MakeHaven, Inc. (New Haven) will increase membership and accelerate the growth of sustainable revenue generation through a makerspace model.
  • MEA Mobile (New Haven) will create an “App Academy” to teach commercial coding skills to recent college graduates with a sustainable product lab approach.
  • Spark Makerspace (New London) will create a membership-based community center for artists, students, inventors and entrepreneurs in southeastern Connecticut by providing tools, workshops, and workspace for the community.

CTNext also added two entrepreneurs in residence, Jim McClafferty and Richard Guha, who will provide strategic business guidance and mentoring services.

“During this round of our partner search, we identified support providers and people who can help to elevate the companies in the ecosystem,” said Glendowlyn Thames, director of Small Business Innovation (SBI) and CTNext. “We also continue to build on the entrepreneur-in-residence model due to the overwhelming demand of members seeking guidance from professionals who have started, owned, grown or run a business. We now have more than 20 partners and six entrepreneurs in residence within the innovation ecosystem supporting the growth of small businesses in our state.”

To find these unique partners, CTNext conducted a formal search through a selection committee and identified partners that could provide direct support to Connecticut entrepreneurs and small companies; create jobs; bring in investment dollars or increase revenues in the state; and/or develop and place skilled talent.

The latest round of partners will join the following list of companies already supporting the ecosystem::

  • BCFC (as a growth company advisor) of Stamford
  • B:Hive Bridgeport of Bridgeport
  • CURE/Bioscience Clubhouse of New Haven
  • Danbury Hackerspace of Danbury
  • Independent Software of New Haven
  • MakeHartford of Hartford
  • reSET of Hartford
  • SECT Tech of New Haven
  • SeeClickFix of New Haven
  • Stamford Innovation Center of Stamford
  • The Grove Collaborative of New Haven
  • The Refinery of Westport
  • UCONN Additive Manufacturing Program of Storrs
  • UCONN Third Bridge Program of Storrs
  • Janis Collins, Entrepreneur in Residence
  • Eric Knight, Entrepreneur in Residence

For more information, please visit

CTNext was created in the 2011 Jobs Bill as an initiative of Governor Dannel P. Malloy and private-sector leaders to support the growth of Connecticut’s most promising startups.

About CTNext:
CTNext is Connecticut’s innovation ecosystem. The goal of the program is to build a more robust community of entrepreneurs and to accelerate startup growth by providing access to talent, space, industry expertise, services, skill development, and capital to foster innovation and create jobs for people in Connecticut. CTNext was launched in 2012 and has worked with more than 600 companies.



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