NorTech is a nonprofit technology-based economic development organization that champions growth in Northeast Ohio’s high tech economy. NorTech marshals resources and forges collaborations to put economic growth on the fast-track by: accelerating technology development and moving innovations from the lab into the marketplace; driving growth in the region’s high tech industries (with a current focus on Advanced Energy and Flexible Electronics); and expanding state and federal funding to support early-stage technology commercialization and industry building.
Federally sponsored research spending in Northeast Ohio is growing at a rate about double the national average. High-tech employment in Northeast Ohio grew 4% from 2004-2008, compared to a 1% decline for the economy as a whole. For the first time, Northeast Ohio has a coordinated effort to secure federal support for its regional economic competitiveness efforts and NorTech is leading that effort. The state of Ohio is supporting technology-based economic development through the Third Frontier program. Since 2007, Northeast Ohio institutions and companies have received nearly $476 million in Third Frontier investments, and NorTech is playing a lead role in advocating for the renewal of the Third Frontier program.
- NorTech announced 14 finalists for its 2012 NorTech Innovation Awards Program. Nine winners were announced during an evening event on March 22 attended by 357 participants at LaCentre in Westlake, OH.
- NorTech was among a group of 20 Northeast Ohio businesses and organizations that traveled to Washington, D.C. on March 9 to participate in a White House Business Leaders' Briefing to provided feedback to the Obama Administration officials on ways to work together to support economic competitiveness, job creation, and innovation in Northeast Ohio. Issues discussed focused on spurring economic growth in Ohio and will be followed by a memo to President Obama in June.
- University of Akron spin off company Design Flux Technologies, was awarded a $10,000 cash award as the Ohio state prize winner in the 2012 Clean Energy Student Challenge competition in Chicago, Illinois. Design Flux Technologies provides an all-in-one solution to energy management that integrates the energy source, the battery’s control system and the application at a lower cost and higher efficiency than existing products.
- NorTech is a partner in the te 2012 Clean Energy Student Challenge, a contest designed to increase the creation of student-run start-ups and accelerate the commercialization of clean energy technologies from Midwest universities. The awards competition is one of six regional student competitions supported by The U.S. Department of Energy to inspire and promote entrepreneurship in the clean energy sector.
- The 2012 Clean Energy Student Challenge was administered by Clean Energy Trust, based in Chicago. The anchor partners for the Student Challenge –Cleantech Open, NorTech, University of Michigan, Purdue University and Washington University— organized the efforts within their individual states and supported funding for the state prize.
- Kent Displays CEO Dr. Albert Green was chosen as one of seven new members named to the Manufacturing Council, a private sector committee that directly advises U.S. Secretary of Commerce John Bryson. The exclusive council, which is made up of 25 private sector members, was created in 2004 to act as a direct conduit between the U.S. Department of Commerce and the manufacturing sector by promoting a partnership across all industry sectors to continuously increase the United States’ global manufacturing competitiveness.
Kent Displays announced it will increase capacity to manufacture flexible LCDs that go into the Boogie Board eWriters. Kent Displays said it plans to install a second roll-to-roll production line at its company headquarters in Kent that will manufacture flexible Reflex No Power LCDs used in the popular Boogie Board eWriters sold by Improv Electronics, the consumer products subsidiary of Kent Displays. When the new line is fully operational in the second half of 2012, it will triple the company’s production capacity for flexible Reflex LCDs.
ADAP Nanotech, LLC announced a $250,000 investment by JumpStart. ADAP Nanotech, LLC (a minority owned company) specializes in the development and manufacture of carbon nanotube-based adhesives and coatings that have a variety of applications including serving as high performance thermal interface materials (NanoTIM) that can facilitate cooling of heat generating electronics. Consumer demand for smaller, lighter, and more powerful devices necessitates higher performing materials to help dissipate the heat these instruments create. ADAP Nanotech, LLC has developed a highly conductive carbon nanotube (CNT)–based adhesive that is far more effective than current thermal interface material (TIM) or "gap fillers". ADAP's NanoTIM micro-patterned aligned nanotube structures are based on gecko-inspired, CNT-based adhesives jointly developed by The University of Akron and Rice University.
- Four companies joined the Advanced Energy cluster: Design Flux Technologies, Process Technologies, South Shore Controls Inc. and Technology Management Inc. (TMI)
- FlexMatters ® cluster added five new member companies: Cubbison Company, Engineered Materials Systems Inc., PanNam Imaging, RKN Corporation and Transilwrap
Kent Displays features Boogie Board Display Writer at big International Electronics Exhibit in Las Vegas.
GrafTech International puts 21st-century twist on materials it's made for 126 years and has been hiring at a steady clip again. In 2010, the company employed 98 people in the city. Today, GrafTech has 165 employees there and is in the midst of hiring more engineers and production staff.
NorTech FlexMatters Cluster Companies Attracted: Butler Technologies, Institute for Advanced Materials, Case Western Reserve University and Cleveland Medical Polymers
NorTech Energy Enterprise Cluster Companies Attracted: Open Oils of Ohio, Commercial Energy Solutions International (CESi)
- NorTech provided Cluster Members access to both State and federal influential figures through private Roundtables, including:
Dr. Cheryl Martin, Deputy Director for Commercialization, ARPA-E, Dec. 2011
Dr. Steven Chu, U.S. Secretary of Energy presented at the City Club of Cleveland on Jan 18, 2012.
- On January 6, NorTech hosted a roundtable meeting with Todd Snitchler, the Chairman of the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) and approximately 12 cluster companies interested in smart gird or energy storage.
- NorTech has announced 14 finalists for its 2012 NorTech Innovation Awards Program. Winners will be announced during an evening event on March 22 at LaCentre in Westlake, OH.