Electric City Innovation Center Launches in Schenectady
Charter Members Include Whiteman, Osterman & Hanna, Union College, GE Global Research, Mark Little and Buzz Media Solutions
Schenectady (March 8, 2016) – The Electric City Innovation Center (ECIC) today announced the start of operations in downtown Schenectady with five members already committed to the new collaborative work space located at 433 State Street. ECIC is open to entrepreneurs and inventors who want to develop early stage companies in a dynamic and collaborative co-working environment. The ECIC has over 10,000 square feet of office and project space at the Center City building located across the street from Proctors. The goal is for ECIC to become a leading innovation center in New York State’s Capital Region.
Anthony Jasenski, Chairman of the Schenectady County Legislature said, “The ECIC will continue the great history of innovation in Schenectady County and bring even more tech talent to our rejuvenated downtown. Our downtown is already a hub for arts, entertainment and technology, but will have even more energy and excitement with the addition of this shared workspace.”
The ECIC is designed to be a launch pad for startup and other innovative companies. By providing a flexible, collaborative work environment, ECIC lets members focus on developing their ideas. Members can select from large co-working areas or private offices. All have access to a stocked kitchen, conference rooms and high-speed Wi-Fi.
ECIC is collaborating with Wise Labs, a technology commercialization company that leverages a large network of former GE scientists and engineers to help start-up entrepreneurs, as well as established businesses, solve technological challenges and commercialize innovations. ECIC members will have access to the Wise Labs network to receive a wide range of support including technical assistance, connections to industry leaders and help with creating business plans and commercialization strategies. “When you develop a gathering place for talented people to work together, you create a destination for innovation,” said Bill Kernick, Executive Director of ECIC.
ECIC has already attracted charter members who have become part of the ECIC ecosystem. They include: • Whiteman, Osterman & Hanna, LLP– the Capital Region’s largest law firm. • Mark Little – retired Chief Technology Officer at GE • Buzz Media Solutions – a public relations and marketing company • GE Global Research • Union College
The ECIC will also host companies that support Schenectady’s Smart City program. The aim of the Smart City initiative is to identify technologies that make cities more responsive, efficient and effective in providing services and support to their communities. Several companies working in the smart cities arena plan to join the ECIC.
Mayor Gary McCarthy said, “ECIC builds on our Smart Cities program and I am pleased to see this new center for innovation emerge here in Schenectady. ECIC will help us retain talent while attracting tech savvy entrepreneurs to our community.”
The ECIC has been made possible in collaboration with the Galesi Group and Metroplex. David M. Buicko, President and CEO of the Galesi Group said, “It would be easier for us to lease space to one company, but we are not about easy solutions. ECIC brings a unique opportunity to Schenectady and we are hopeful that it will spur the development of interesting high-tech startup companies that will grow and remain in our community.”
Ray Gillen, Metroplex Chair said, “Many progressive downtowns around the country now offer coworking spaces. Few shared work spaces have the advantages offered by ECIC including linkages with former GE technology leaders, on-site legal and communications expertise and a chance to work technology mentors and local colleges. We are very excited about the potential as ECIC launches in our renewed downtown.”